Just wondering what you all would think of this, if NJT bought the Acelas to begin replacement of the Arrow III EMUs before the Multilevel III EMUs would begin arriving. The trainsets will be referred to by the power car numbers. The story goes like this: It's the year 2021, Amtrak inaugurates the first Avelia Liberty trainset, #9000 (fictional number since the real numbers are TBA), and this boosts the PR of Amtrak. NJT saw this in face of declining ridership along the NEC. Everyone was taking the Amtrak trains instead since they looked more modern. So they too, also wanted high-speed trainsets to improve service both on the Northeast Corridor and the possibly the North Jersey Coast Line. The Arrow IIIs are also starting to break down constantly, and some even were towed by locomotives as coaches, similar to the days of the Budd Metroliner. They decided that instead of purchasing all-new EMUs to replace the Arrow IIIs, they should instead buy a used trainset for cheaper, and save up for that big Multilevel III order that was under consideration. So they asked Amtrak if they could purchase some units. Knowing that more Avelias were on their way, Amtrak said yes. Number 2008-2009 was leased to NJT for testing on the NJCL. The tests were successful, with a maximum speed of 140 mph near Red Bank station. Amtrak sold 12 Acelas to them at a cost of $280,000 per trainset. Numbers 2002-2025. 2 of these trainsets would be cannibalized (2022-2025), and the other 10 would run in service. One Acela trainset 2000-2001, the prototype, was bought by the National Railroad Historical Society and stored in their West Boonton yard and put alongside "Ol' big red." The 7 remaining Acelas (2026-2039) would be stored in Wilmington with an unknown fate. SEPTA had considered buying 5 trainsets and cannibalizing the other two as well, but knew that the Acelas wouldn't be able to use their potential on the older PRR and Reading trackage. So they dropped out. (Original Acela drawing by RailroadSaturday on DeviantArt). NJT skin by me. Meanwhile, the NJT Acelas were sent to be overhauled by Motive Power Inc. in Erie, PA. This was paid for by the state of NJ, so the state seal was placed on each coach. The most obvious feature of the overhaul to a passenger's eye were the new paint scheme and renovated interiors. Four trainsets, (2016-2023) were painted in a promotional livery (not shown) for the North Jersey Coast Line and made a new service called The Jersey Shoreliner. The trainsets were renumbered to 9900-9923. The NEC trains were known as the NJXPRESS. They made exceptional service along the NEC boosting the performance and PR for NJT. The overhaul greatly improved their reliability. They trainsets were restricted to 135 mph as official top speed, but on the inaugural run, trainset #9900-9901 made 156mph on the North Jersey Coast Line. But this caused severe arcing in the catenary, so the trainsets are now limited to 110mph on the NJCL. It is most likely that they will last at least another 25 years in service once the overhaul wears out.