Canadian Manufacturing

CN purchases 1,000 high-capacity hopper cars to enable more grain shipments

The new railcars will be built by TrinityRail at a facility in Mexico.

May 7, 2021  by CM Staff

MONTREAL — On May 7, CN announced it had placed an order for 1,000 new generation, high-capacity grain hopper cars. These new railcars, to be built in a TrinityRail manufacturing plant in Mexico, will help meet the needs of North American grain farmers and demands of grain customers.

The TrinityRail order is part of a larger program to build and renew a fleet of 6,000 hopper railcars over the next three years. CN recently made a formal offer to acquire Kansas City Southern, a fellow Class I railway. The combination would extend the span of CN’s network from Canada and the U.S. into Mexico, making it the first railroad to link North America’s three national economies.

“These cars will be manufactured in Mexico and will help move more grain across the CN rail network, which continues to make CN the embodiment of a true USMCA railroad. Being an engine of North American economic growth and prosperity means that CN focuses continually on making strategic investments. Adding these 1,000 new generation hopper cars to our fleet is a prime example of that. In addition to our superior proposal to combine with KCS, this is a step further in our vision of seamlessly connecting ports and rails in the United States, Mexico and Canada and of providing superior service, enhanced competition and new market access to move goods across North America efficiently and safely.” said JJ Ruest, President and Chief Executive Officer, CN.

“The purchase of 1,000 new high-capacity hopper cars by CN is good news for Canadian grain farmers, grain customers, and the Canadian economy. A safe and reliable freight rail system is a critical part of a healthy Canadian economy that supports good middle class jobs.” said Omar Alghabra, Minister of Transport, Government of Canada.

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“On behalf of Canada’s grain farmers, we are encouraged by any investment that helps get our grain to markets across the world. As our production increases, we see this as a positive sign that our rail capacity is poised to keep up with growing demand here and abroad.” said Andre Harpe, Chairman, Grain Growers of Canada

According to CN, their ability to deliver grain shipments is largely due to investments made by the company over the past few years to improve safety and network fluidity. The purchase of these lighter, shorter, high capacity rail cars hopes to enable CN to move more grain, with less equipment.