R142A (New York City Subway car)

The R142A is the second order of new technology cars (NTTs) for the A Division of the New York City Subway.[3] These cars were built by Kawasaki Heavy Industries in Japan. They replaced the Redbird trains, including the R26, R28, R29, R33, R33S, and R36. The R142A fleet initially comprised 600 cars, arranged as five-car units.

4 train leaving Harlem on August night.jpg
An R142A train on the 4 leaving 125th Street
R142A 5 Train Interior.jpg
Interior of an R142A car
In service2000–present
ManufacturerKawasaki Rail Car Company
Built atYonkers, New York, United States
Lincoln, Nebraska, United States
Kobe, Hyōgo, Japan
Family nameNTT (new technology train)
ReplacedAll Redbirds (R26-R36)
Entered serviceJuly 10, 2000; 19 years ago (July 10, 2000)
RefurbishedR188s: 2014–2016
(cars 7211–7590 only)
Number built600
Number in service600
220 as R142As (180 in revenue service during rush hours)
380 as R188 conversions
Formation5-car sets (2 A cars and 3 B cars)
Fleet numbers7211–7810 (as built)
7591–7810 (currently, after R188 conversion)
Capacity176 (A car)
188 (B car)
Operator(s)New York City Subway
Depot(s)Jerome Yard[1]
Service(s) assigned"4" train – 170 cars (17 trains, AM rush)
 – 160 cars (16 trains, PM rush)[2]
Car body constructionStainless steel with fiberglass end bonnets
Train length513.3 feet (156.5 m)
Car length51.33 feet (15.65 m)
Width8.60 feet (2,621 mm)
Height11.89 feet (3,624 mm)
Floor height3.6458 ft (1.11 m)
Platform height3.6458 ft (1.11 m)
Doors6 sets of 54 inch wide side doors per car
Maximum speed55 mph (89 km/h) Service
80 mph (130 km/h) Design
Weight73,300 lb (33,200 kg) (A car)
67,800 lb (30,800 kg) (B car)
Traction systemBombardier MITRAC propulsion system,
3-Phase IGBT-VVVF two-level AC Traction Motors Model 1508C, Pulse-width modulation
Power output150 hp (111.855 kW) per motor axle; 2,100 hp (1,565.970 kW) per 5-car set
Acceleration2.5 mph/s (4.0 km/(h⋅s))
Deceleration3.0 mph/s (4.8 km/(h⋅s))
(full service),
3.2 mph/s or 5.1 km/(h⋅s)
AuxiliariesSAFT 195 AH battery (B car)
Power supplyThird rail
Electric system(s)625 V DC
Current collection methodContact shoe
Braking system(s)Dynamic/Regenerative braking propulsion system; WABCO RT-96 tread brake system
Safety system(s)Dead man's switch, Train stop
Track gauge1,435 mm (4 ft 8 12 in) standard gauge

The first R142As entered service on July 10, 2000, and initially ran on the Lexington Avenue Line. The R142As, along with the R142s, are the first New York City Subway cars to feature recorded announcements. In the early 2010s, 380 cars were retrofitted with communications-based train control (CBTC) for the automation of the Flushing Line and became part of the R188 fleet, leaving 220 cars in the R142A fleet. In January 2019, the MTA has proposed mid-life upgrades to the remainder of the R142As.


The R142As are numbered 7591–7810. They were originally numbered 7211–7810 when built, but cars 7211–7590 were converted into R188s.[4][5][6]

The R142A contract was divided into three sub-orders: 400 main order cars (7211–7610), 120 option order cars (7611–7730), and eighty cars built under a supplemental contract (R142S) in 2003-2004 to supplement the R142As (7731–7810). Regardless of sub-order differences, all R142As are mechanically and physically identical to each other.[7]

Currently, all R142As are maintained at the Jerome Yard and assigned to the 4.[8][9]


The R142As feature Bombardier MITRAC propulsion systems, electronic braking, automatic climate control, electronic strip maps, interior and exterior electronic displays,[10] and an on-board intercom system. The R142 and the R142A were partly designed by Antenna Design.[11][12]

The R142As are divided up into five-car sets, in the A-B-B-B-A configuration, with the two A cars (cab cars) on the ends, and three B cars (non-cab cars) in the middle. Trains consist of two five-car sets coupled together, making up a ten-car train. Like all other A-Division cars, each car has three sets of doors per side.[13] Like the R110As, the R142As feature wider doors than past A-Division equipment, with 54-inch side doors (about 9 inches narrower than the R110As' 63-inch doors, but 4 inches wider than the R62/As' 50-inch doors). All car ends have windows, allowing passengers to see through to the next car, except cab ends, where the cab walls prevent such visibility. The R142A car bodies are constructed from stainless steel.[14]

Experimental featuresEdit

From late 2017 to late 2018, the interiors of the electronic sign boxes on cars 7691-7692 were retrofitted with LCD screens, replacing the MTA Arts for Transit cards usually located there. Several R160s were previously retrofitted with this feature. The screens were similar to the interior LED screens on the R143s, except that the R142As' screens had the capabilities to display multiple colors instead of only red, orange, and green.[a][better source needed]

Recorded AnnouncementsEdit

The R142As and R142s are the first New York City Subway cars to feature recorded announcements.[10] All passenger cars built after them also use this feature.

Current recorded announcements are by:

  • Jessica Ettinger, 1010 WINS Anchor: announcements for Lexington Avenue Line trains (4, 5, and 6)
  • Dianne Thompson: announcements for the IRT Broadway–Seventh Avenue Line trains (1, 2, and 3)
  • Charlie Pellett: announcements to warn passengers of the closing doors and transfer announcements at most stations; formerly provided safety and delay announcements (2002–2017) (2002-present Transfers, Last Stop and Door Warning only)
  • Velina Mitchell: safety and delay announcements (2018–present)

The first three people were news anchors with Bloomberg Radio at the time the announcements were recorded. Since then, Ettinger and Pellett have moved to 1010 WINS-AM and Sirius Satellite Radio, working with Howard Stern and his Howard 100 News team.[15]



The first ten R142As, 7211–7220, were delivered on December 20, 1999.[16] The cars entered regular service on the 6 on July 10, 2000 after several months of testing and the resolving of all issues.[17][18] During delivery, there were minor issues reported with the R142s and the R142As.[19]


Cars 7211–7590 (a total of 380 cars) have been retrofitted with CBTC for Flushing Line CBTC service and were converted to R188s.[4][5][6] Cars 7591–7810 (the remaining 220 cars) are still part of the R142A fleet and will be retrofitted with CBTC hardware in the future.[20]:24

In January 2019, the MTA proposed mid-life upgrades to several train subsystems in the R142 and R142A fleets. These included changes to the HVAC, propulsion, and door systems, based on installations of these systems in the R188 fleet. Upgrades also included conversion of the remaining R142A fleet to be compatible with communications-based train control, in conjunction with subway signal upgrades along the IRT Lexington Avenue Line.[20]:24

See alsoEdit

Notes and ReferencesEdit


  1. ^ See also:
    • Tech And Transit (May 16, 2017), NYC Subway: R142A (4) Train #7691 LCD Screen Advertisements, retrieved February 9, 2018


  1. ^ http://web.archive.org/web/20191205124356/http://nyctrackbook.com/Images/Updates/P.xlii.pdf
  2. ^ "Subdivision 'A' Car Assignments: Cars Required April 27, 2020" (PDF). The Bulletin. Electric Railroaders' Association. 63 (6): 14. June 2020. Retrieved June 1, 2020.
  3. ^ "Some New Subway Cars Put Into Service Monday" Archived May 3, 2008, at the Wayback Machine NY1–10 July 2000. Retrieved on 2008-04-24
  4. ^ a b "NYCT Cars - Current Car Fleet". thejoekorner.com.
  5. ^ a b "Image: dsc05585j.jpg, (3456 × 2592 px)". img821.imageshack.us. January 20, 2012. Retrieved September 4, 2015.
  6. ^ a b "Image: dsc05671vd.jpg, (3456 × 2592 px)". img109.imageshack.us. February 7, 2012. Retrieved September 4, 2015.
  7. ^ Chiasson, George (July 2003). "IRT Car Update" (PDF). The Bulletin. Electric Railroaders' Association, Incorporated. 46 (7): 15.
  8. ^ "Subdivision "A" Car Assignments" (PDF). The Bulletin. Electric Railroaders' Association, Incorporated. 61 (7): 16. July 2018.
  9. ^ "New York City Subway Car Update" (PDF). The Bulletin. Electric Railroaders' Association, Incorporated. 61 (8): 4. August 2018.
  10. ^ a b Boldt, Roger; Board, National Research Council (U S. ) Transportation Research (2000). Information Technology Update for Transit. Transportation Research Board. p. 98. ISBN 9780309068642.
  11. ^ Chan, Sewell (November 30, 2005). "New Subway Cars Promise All Kinds of Information". The New York Times. Retrieved October 27, 2007.
  12. ^ "Antenna: News". antennadesign.com.
  13. ^ Manhattan East Side Transit Alternatives Study (MESA): Environmental Impact Statement. Metropolitan Transportation Authority. August 1999. pp. 9D-20, 9D-21.
  14. ^ Seaton, Charles (January 1, 2001). "NYCT's New 'Millennium' Cars Enter Service". Metro Magazine.
  15. ^ "www.nycsubway.org". www.nycsubway.org.
  16. ^ Korman, Joseph (February 2000). "NYCT Cars - The Next Generation". www.thejoekorner.com. Retrieved October 31, 2017.
  17. ^ "Facts and Figures". web.mta.info. Metropolitan Transportation Authority. Retrieved October 31, 2017.
  18. ^ "Some New Subway Cars Put Into Service Monday". ny1.com. NY1 News. July 10, 2000. Archived from the original on February 3, 2009. Retrieved October 31, 2017.
  19. ^ Kennedy, Randy (March 17, 2001). "New Subway Cars Show Flaws And Are Removed for Repairs". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved January 9, 2018.
  20. ^ a b "Capital Program Oversight Committee Meeting" (PDF). Metropolitan Transportation Authority. January 2019. Retrieved January 18, 2019.

External linksEdit

  Media related to R142A (New York City Subway car) at Wikimedia Commons