A NEW look Merseyrail fleet will be unveiled in the next few weeks as part of an £8.5 million investment.

The refurbishment will see both the inside and outside of the trains transformed to get a fresher, brighter image, including improvements to both the inside and outside of the trains.

Train “wraps” will be added to the exterior of the almost 40-year-old fleet to prevent corrosion while internal enhancements are still be discussed, with areas including seats, doors, panels, fixtures and signage, expected to be updated.

The improvements to Merseyrail’s 59 three-car train set – which was last refurbished in 2003 at a cost of £32m – will help to maintain standards until wholesale fleet modernisation takes place by the end of the decade.

Angel Trains, the rolling stock company which owns the fleet, is contributing £5.5m to the project as part of their lease agreement with Merseytravel, and a further £3m is being provided by Merseyrail.

Councillor John Salter, Merseytravel’s lead member for rail, said: “Merseyrail is one of the best performing networks in the country and for that to continue we need to invest in the network and stock in the short, medium and long term.

“It is about keeping standards high for regular passengers and the thousands of visitors we welcome to the city region, particularly this year with its packed programme of events.”

Maarten Spaargaren, managing director at Merseyrail, added: “We know that the presentation of our trains, both on the outside and inside, is very important to our customers, which is why we are keen to ensure that the overall impression is modern, fresh and appealing.

“We hope that the new look will encourage more people to give Merseyrail a try and start using trains to get around the city region.”