Alstom Metropolis C751A

Alstom Metropolis C751A
SBS  Transit C751A Train
SBS Transit C751A Train
In service June 2003 – Present
Manufacturer Alstom
Constructed 2000 – 2001
Number built 150 Vehicles (25 trainsets)
Formation 6 cars per trainset
Fleet number 7001/7002 – 7049/7050
Operators SBS Transit
Depot(s) Sengkang
Line(s) served North East Line
Technical Data
Car body Welded aluminium
Doors 8 per car
Electrification 1500 V DC overhead catenary
Track gauge Standard Gauge (1435mm)

The Alstom Metropolis C751A is an electric multiple unit (EMU) train operating on the North East Line (NEL). Entering service in 2003, these were the North East Line’s first generation of rolling stock.

Twenty-five trainsets comprising six cars each were procured. They were manufactured from 2000 to 2001 by Alstom S.A. in Valenciennes, France. The C751A trains are also the first driverless heavy-rail trains in Singapore, as well as the first trains in Singapore to utilize communication-based train control (CBTC).

Mid-life refurbishment works were carried out between 2019 and 2024.


Initiated in 1997 whilst MRT construction was ongoing, Contract 751A (C751A) for the procurement of rolling stock called for of 25 trainsets of six cars each. It was awarded to Alstom S.A. of France, where they were built in Valenciennes, France.

The trains were built as part of Alstom’s Metropolis family of urban EMU trains. They draw power from a 1500 V DC overhead catenary, unique to the North East Line as other Mass Rapid Transit lines in Singapore rely on the 750 V DC third rail for electrification. Running on Alstom’s Urbalis 300 CBTC system, these trains are fully automated (ATO GoA 4) and do not require an attendant on board. In emergency situations, trains can still be manually driven from each end.

Each 6-car train is actually two 3-car trainsets coupled together, each comprising of a Driving Trailer (DT) and two Motor Cars (Mp and Mi). The second and fifth cars of each train (Mp) are equipped with a pantograph.


These trains entered revenue service on 20 June 2003 with the opening of the 19.2-kilometre fully-underground North East Line between HarbourFront and Punggol.

To reduce the width of the platform gap, one train was trialed with an additional metal strip at the doorway. A successful trial to install additional handgrips at the centre of train cars eventually led to fleet-wide implementation.

Current Design

The exterior of C751A trains was a mix of black at the top and white at the bottom, with a central orange and purple stripe running the length of the train. Small viewing windows at each end allow passengers a view of the tunnel.

All C751A trains are comprised of six cars with open gangway connections between all cars. Each car has eight doors, four on each side. The interior features longitudinal seating in uniform color scheme of purple and beige. Priority seats are located in every car, near the doors. Trains were also fitted with a Visual Passenger Information System (VPIS), with ceiling-mounted LED textual displays and LCD screens above the rows of seats. The LCD screens, formerly showing rail travel information and commercials, have since been switched off. Two Wheelchair Bays are located in the middle two cars of every C751A train, at doors 9 and 16.

Emergency Exits are located at both ends of every train, with a ramp that can be deployed in an emergency. Within the cabin, Emergency Communication Buttons (integrated with Door Unlock Handles) are located at the side of the train doors, enabling passengers to speak with staff or open the train doors in an emergency. Fire extinguishers are also placed in every car.

Mid-Life Upgrade

In 2017, SBS Transit called for a tender to carry out Mid-Life Refurbishment and Upgrading for the 25 Alstom Metropolis C751A trains. These trains are the first-generation NEL trains and entered service in 2003. The 2017 SBS Transit Annual Report mentioned that works for the Contract would start in 2018 and the scope would include:

  • Redesign of air-conditioning and ventilation systems
  • Renewal of critical components
  • Installation of condition monitoring equipment to enhance train reliability and improve service recovery capabilities.

With NEL transitioning to the New Rail Financing Framework (NRFF) on 1 April 2018, the Land Transport Authority (LTA) took over ownership of assets such as the Alstom Metropolis C751A Trains. On 17 December 2018, LTA awarded the Contract worth about $116.7 million to CRRC Nanjing Puzhen Co Ltd.

The contract scope awarded by LTA includes:

  • Detailed inspections on all the mechanical and electrical systems for the trains, with parts repaired or replaced where necessary
  • Replacing interior fittings of the trains, such as seats, panels and flooring, for more pleasant and comfortable rides
  • Installing a new condition monitoring system to monitor train performance more closely and facilitate better maintenance planning
  • Upgrading trains’ air-conditioning, ventilation and passenger information systems for better functionality
  • Installation of Dynamic Route Map Displays (DRMD) above train doors
  • Replacing interior fittings of the trains, such as seats, panels and flooring, for more pleasant and comfortable rides

Works under the LTA-awarded contract are scheduled to start in the 1st Quarter of 2019 and are expected to be completed by the 3rd Quarter of 2024. The trains will be renewed and upgraded one at a time at the Sengkang Train Depot. In what appears to be a delay, the first train was handed over to the tenderer only in August 2019, and SBS Transit’s 2022 annual report gave a revised completion date of 1st Quarter 2026.

The first refurbished train set (7013/7014) re-entered revenue service on 28 February 2022.

Up-cycling of Used Train Parts & Accessories

A call for ideas was posted by several Members of Parliament under the #Action4GreenTowns campaign on Facebook in May 2022 for used train parts & accessories from refurbished trains.

These parts are:

  • MRT Seats
  • Handrail Straps
  • Handrail Bar
  • Intercom Casing
  • Driver’s Console Panel
  • Draught Screen
  • Door Handrail
  • LED Cover

2 seats were installed at Block 366 Woodlands Avenue 5 with a mural designed by Noc Vvyne Lim in May 2022.

Other pairs of seats were installed at:

  • Block 363 Woodlands Avenue 5

More seats would be installed in the Marsiling-Yew Tee Town Council area in the near future.

Train Formation

A six-car trainset is formed of two three-car sets permanently coupled together. Each set comprises one driving trailer (DT) and two motor cars (Mi and Mp). As such, the running configuration of a C751A trainset is DT–Mp–Mi–Mi–Mp–DT.

Every car is identified by a five digit number ranging from 7x001 to 7x050, where the first digit is always 7, and the second digit x is carriage identifier. The driving trailer is 1, followed by the second car using 2 and the third car using 3. The last three digits refer to the 3-car trainset of which the train is comprised of. SBS Transit’s 25 trains are actually 50 3-car trainsets coupled together in an even-odd arrangement, i.e. Set 7001/7002, Set 7003/7004 and on to Set 7049/7050.

As such, a sample Set 7049/7050 will contain the carriage numbers 71049-72049-73049-73050-72050-71050. Depending on the direction of travel, the sequence may be reversed. All sets were built by Alstom.


External Links & References

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8 thoughts on “Alstom Metropolis C751A

  • 8 February 2023 at 4:15 PM

    As of February 2023, there are 3 refurbished trainsets on North-East Line Alstom Metropolis C751A. They are:
    Set 7013/7014
    Set 7009/7010
    Set 7039/7040 (recent refurbished train)

    • 15 September 2023 at 10:32 PM

      As of September 2023, there are 4 refurbished sets and 1 set that is confirmed to be undergoing refurbishment.
      1. 7013/7014
      2. 7009/7010
      3. 7039/7040
      4. 7045/7046
      5. 7017/7018

      • 8 January 2024 at 3:22 PM

        As of January 2024, there are 7 refurbished sets and 2 sets that are confirmed to be undergoing refurbishment
        1. 7013/7014
        2. 7009/7010
        3. 7039/7040
        4. 7045/7046
        5. 7017/7018
        6. 7049/7050
        7. 7035/7036
        8. 7003/7004
        9. 7005/7006

  • 25 September 2017 at 9:16 PM

    The thing I like about the Alstom Metropolis C751A is the end is not flat , and I especially like STARiS ( SBS Transit Active Route information System )

    #It might not be right.

    • 27 October 2022 at 10:28 AM

      sir STARiS stands for SMRT Active Route Map Information System. C751A (unrefurbished) does not have the equivalent of STARiS at all, but only a VPIS.

  • 28 April 2017 at 2:39 PM

    What is the price of C751B during Construction?


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