Breda A650

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Breda A650
Ansaldobreda A650.jpg
In service 1993–present
Manufacturer AnsaldoBreda
Constructed 1988–1997
Entered service 1993–1998
Scrapped 2021–
Number built 72
Formation 2 cars per trainset
Capacity 180 (61 seats)
Operator(s) Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority
Line(s) served Purple Line
Red Line
Car body construction Stainless steel
Train length 450 ft (137.16 m) (6-car train)
Car length 75 ft (22.86 m)
Width 10 ft (3.05 m)
Height 12 ft (3.66 m)
Floor height 3.73 ft (1.14 m)
Maximum speed 70 mph (110 km/h)
Weight 80,000 pounds (36,290 kg)
Acceleration 3 mph/s (4.4 ft/s2; 1.3 m/s2)
Deceleration 2.2 mph/s (3.2 ft/s2; 0.98 m/s2)
Electric system(s) 650–950 V DC Third rail
Current collection method Contact shoe
Safety system(s) Automatic Train Control
Track gauge 4 ft 8 12 in (1,435 mm) standard gauge

The Breda A650 is an electric multiple unit heavy rail car purpose built for use on the Los Angeles County Metro Rail system. It was manufactured by Breda between 1988 and 1997 and is used on the Metro's Red and Purple Lines.


The fleet of 72 vehicles was supplied in two orders. The first vehicles (fleet numbers 501–530) were built between 1988 and 1993 and are propelled by a DC traction system supplied by Westinghouse. The remaining vehicles (fleet numbers 531–604), were built between 1995 and 1997 and include AC propulsion and intercar safety barriers. The acceleration for this last group of cars is almost identical to that of the 1000 series cars found on the Washington Metro because they both utilize the same General Electric traction motors.

These cars share a design very similar to the Budd Universal Transit Vehicle, which was built between 1982 and 1986 for the Baltimore Metro Subway and the Miami Metrorail.

Costing $1.5 million each, the trains usually run in four to six car consists, and feature automatic train control, air conditioning, emergency intercoms, wheelchair spaces and emergency braking.

The fleet is maintained in a yard south of Union Station on Santa Fe Drive near 4th Street on the west bank of the Los Angeles River in Downtown Los Angeles.


The A650s are scheduled to be replaced by the CRRC-built HR4000 series trains in the early 2020s.[2]

In popular culture[edit]

The Breda A650 was depicted as being burned in the tunnel between MacArthur Park and Metro Center in the 1997 film Volcano, when a lava flow through the tunnel killed nearly all on board. The A650 was featured in Speed when the emergency brake feature stops and the train derails. It is also featured in SWAT and The Italian Job. It is also seen taking a nosedive plummet from a mountain as the cataclysmic events of December 21, 2012, unfold in 2012. It is also featured in countless commercials and TV shows.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Los Angeles HRV" (PDF). AnsaldoBreda. Retrieved December 3, 2013. 
  2. ^ "L.A. Metro inks pact with CRRC for up to 282 new rail cars". Progressive Railroading. March 24, 2017. Retrieved March 24, 2017.