LIRR M-1 cars #9547 and #9548 are a familiar face to many Long Islanders. 770 of these cars ran in commuter service from December 1968 to January 2007 – hauling hundreds of thousands of commuters. These cars composed the backbone of the LIRR commuter fleet during these years.

Originally called ‘The Metropolitans’, these cars were a major improvement over their predecessors, as they were equipped with air conditioning. They were manufactured by the Budd Rail Car Company at their Red Lion Assembly Plant in Northeast Philadelphia. The first commuter train using M1 cars was an 8-car local from Babylon to Penn Station.

Historically, this married pair of LIRR M-1s at RMLI Riverhead are significant because they are the only known M-1s to have ever traveled to Grand Central Terminal, Manhattan.  On October 1, 1998, #9547 and #9548 were Long Island Rail Road’s Ambassador to the grand reopening ceremony of the restored terminal and were placed on view at track level to promote the future MTA East Side Access project.

Restoration notes:
The M-1s are made of stainless steel and are in very good shape. The cars have had their number boards replaced, and their original blue stripe restored to a brighter color. These cars are in outstanding on the inside as well and  have been featured in several educational and professional films and videos.  A clip from a recent (2017) project, “The Pope of Mineola” may be seen here:      These cars are periodically opened for tours by our docents.

* Fun Fact:  these and most LIRR cars are never ‘turned’, thus the south side of the cars are always a bit more sun exposed than the north side. This can clearly be seen in the windows, which are more ‘weathered’ on the south side than the north.