A ride on Kuala Lumpur’s railways

A few pictures showing railways in and around Kuala Lumpur which I took in March 2002. Please note that the text is now somewhat out of date.

Kuala Lumpur seems to be trying to collect as many forms of rail transport as possible, with a conventional metro, an automatic metro, two different railway gauges and a monorail!


[Putra train]
One of the 70 linear induction motor powered vehicles on the Putra (Projek Usahasama Transit Ringan Automatik) metro.

[Kuala Lumpur skyline]
A view over Kuala Lumpur city centre from the front of a train. The trains are driverless, so passengers get a clear view out of the front window.

[View from train window]
The 29 km Putra metro is fully automatic.


The KTM Komuter network is centred on Kuala Lumpur. Electrification began in 1995, and 160 km is now wired at 25 kV 50Hz AC. EMUs run from Seremban, south of KL on the main line to Singapore, to Rawang in the north, taking two hours. The second Komuter route provides Sentul to Port Klang services, which take about 1·5 hours.

Both routes pass through KL Sentral and Kuala Lumpur stations in the capital city, and run regularly from about 05.30 to midnight.

The old station building in central Kuala Lumpur dates from 1886.

To the north of and contiguous with the old station are more modern facilities, where all the train seemed to be stopping. The old station has a train shed and open access to the platforms, the new has substantial canopies and automatic ticket barriers controlling access. Platform heights vary between the parts. There is another new station, KL Sentral, to the south.

[KTMB locomotive]
Locomotive at KL

[KTMB shunters]
Shunters at KL

[KTMB locomotive]
Locomotive in KL station

[KTMB locomotive]
A locomotive at Rawang, the northern terminus of electrifed services in March 2002. Work is underway to double track and electrify the line northwards to Ipoh.

[Shunting locomotive]
This 0-6-0 diesel shunter was lurking at a cement works near Padang Jawa on the Port Klang line.

KTMB metre-gauge EMUs stabled at Rawang, north of Kuala Lumpur.

[EMU interior]
Inside an EMU.

Another EMU, in the suburbs of Kuala Lumpur.


[Star metro]
The Star metro in Kuala Lumpur is 27 km long, and serves 25 stations. Line 1 opened in 1996, Line 2 in 1998.

[Star metro train]
A Star driving car. Unlike Putra, Star is not automated.

Express Rail Link

[Express Rail Link]
View from the cab of a test train on the Express Rail Link. A KTMB train is on the metre-gauge line to the right.

[Express Rail Link Desiro train]
Our airport-bound test train passes another Siemens Desiro heading towards KL Sentral.

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