New images of ScotRail's UK-first carriages for carrying cycles on Highland routes unveiled
Specially designed cycle carriages are set to be introduced for the first time in the UK on a Scottish Highland rail route.
ScotRail is transforming five Class 153 trains to carry up to 20 bikes to enhance existing services on the scenic West Highland Line, running from Glasgow to Oban, Fort William and Mallaig.
The new carriages will provide custom-built racks to accommodate bikes, sporting equipment and large items of luggage - as well as more seats for customers.
The trains will also help support winter sports in Scotland during the winter months, accommodating large bulky items such as ski bags and rucksacks.
Modified by Brodie Engineering in Kilmarnock, East Ayrshire the carriages will receive a full interior and exterior refresh.
New features will include installation of free WiFi, at seat power sockets and a refurbished toilet with controlled emission toilet (CET) tank.
The first refurbished Class 153 carriage is due for delivery in 2020 and will be gradually rolled into service on the completion of staff training.
The project is aimed at supporting the Scottish Government's commitment to economic development through active tourism and improved transport connectivity.
Tom Smith, ScotRail project manager, said: "This innovative pilot is the first of its type in the UK and we're delighted to have come up with something truly bespoke for Scotland and the West Highlands.
"We are continually looking to enhance the experience our customers have when travelling on our trains, and the introduction of these carriages will be a welcome boost for cyclists and those in search of outdoor pursuits.
"This project will support tourism, and bring wider economic benefits, along Scotland's most scenic railways."