New AZUR métro cars

The new AZUR métro cars

The gradual replacement of the MR-63 cars, which have been running since the métro opened in 1966, will mark a major change in the history of Montréal’s public transit system. For users, the new 21st century rolling stock, scheduled to enter service in fall 2014, will mean:

  • Better servicePhoto future train
  • Increased capacity
  • Greater comfort
  • Increased reliability

As in other major cities, including Munich, Berlin, Bangkok, Shanghai, Mexico City, Delhi, and Madrid, the new nine-car “boa” trains will allow passengers to move about freely from one end to the other.

The transition from our forty-eight-year-old vehicles to new state-of-the-art cars requires a phenomenal amount of preparation. Our expertise and know-how in the fields of engineering, public transit operation, and infrastructure management will be put to good use. This project will also impact the work of many employees, including drivers and maintenance workers.

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On October 22, 2010, STM signed a contract with the Bombardier-Alstom Consortium (BAC) to purchase 468 métro cars. This project, which will be spread out over several years, calls for a $2.4G investment, financed jointly by Quebec’s Ministère des transports (75%) and the Montréal agglomeration (25%).

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We considered your needs while taking into account our operational requirements

With its modern design and new interior layout, the new car is the result of numerous consultations held at key steps in the manufacturing process. During these consultations, users tested various components such as seats, support poles, grab bars, and interphones to determine the best choices. Employees were also consulted about the new car’s maintenance and ergonomics.

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30,000 people helped design the external appearance of the new train.

You also helped us name it!

The name AZUR was chosen from among the 6,000 names submitted by our employees and the public.

Consult the accessibility page for more info on the external medias.

See Announcement of the name AZUR on YouTube

In summer 2012, a full-scale model of the new car was placed on public display at the Berri-UQAM station, allowing thousands of regular and occasional users to consider its merits and provide feedback to STM experts. The public also had an opportunity to visit the model car parked on McGill College Avenue during the Go Green – Ride and Save event.

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Excellent opportunities for Montrealers to discover the benefits of their collective heritage.

Photo exterior model car 2012 at Berri

How AZUR will benefit you

  • Freedom of movement: nine-car trains allow passengers to move freely from one end to the other
  • Increased capacity: each train can accommodate up to 8% more passengers.
  • Ventilation system adjusts automatically to number of passengers in each car
  • 27% wider doors: easier to embark and disembark, obstruction sensors
  • Designed to ensure universal accessibility: more and better-positioned hand grips, colours and contrasts chosen for better visibility
  • Optimal ergonomic positioning of seats
  • Layout of end cars: 22 fixed seats, 2 flip-up seats, 2 spaces reserved for wheel chairs, ischiatic supports
  • Layout of middle cars: 28 fixed seats, 4 flip-up seats.
  • Top-of-the-line public address system, acoustic environment to minimize background noise
  • Panoramic windows with anti-grafitti and anti-scratchitti protective coatings
  • Innovative lighting: indirect lighting to create a more comfortable environment
  • Pneumatic suspension system: smoother ride, less vibration
  • Heightened sense of security: 3 times more intercoms, impossible to fall between cars, 4 continuous surveillance cameras
  • High-tech information systems

Photo interior model car 2012 at Berri

Consult the accessibility page for more info on the external medias.

See Model car AZUR on YouTube

Accessibility, features, and the environment

Another step toward universal accessibility

AZUR has been designed to meet the standards of universal accessibility. Platforms at the front of trains in stations equipped with elevators have been adapted to allow clients in wheel chairs to board trains without assistance. The height of platforms has been harmonized with that of the new trains next to the second and third doors in the front cars.

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Currently, passengers in wheel chairs require assistance from STM employees to board trains.

Photo raising station platform

The train’s exterior design: a bold, distinctive look

Vitality: a streamlined profile evoking strength and balance, exciting colours with a metallic finish

Modernity: new technology successfully used in other major cities, a concept tested and approved by Montrealers

Ease of movement: open-concept “boa” cars, increased capacity, panoramic windows.

Timelessness: in line with the principles of sustainable development, designed to serve for the next four decades; a classic design anchored in daily realities, primarily blue, a colour beloved by Montrealers

Environmental aspects

Cars manufactured with 60% Canadian content, equipment 92.5% recyclable at the end of its useful life, 100% powered by hydroelectricity (green energy source), paper advertising eliminated inside trains

In the service shops, preparing for AZUR

Designed to work with the existing nine-car trains, the STM’s service shops are undergoing major changes to accommodate the new boa trains, where passengers will be able to walk from one car to another. Demolition and construction work is well advanced. The new shop, highly specialized in  the maintenance of modern metro cars, is extremely complex.



A prototype train should be delivered in spring 2014. It will be tested at night on one line of the metro system.

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