The Southern Tablelands Rail Users Group (STRUG) is disappointed the state's new rail fleet will not be tilt trains.
On February 14 the State Government said it had signed a contract with Spanish company Momentum Trains for the $2.8 billion project to design, build, finance and maintain the new regional rail fleet at a new purpose-built maintenance facility in Dubbo.
STRUG president Greg Price said the government had missed an opportunity to upgrade to tilt trains and that it would be "more of the same" as the current 40-year-old fleet.
"By not buying tilt trains, the State Government has condemned regional NSW residents to a continuation of the same slow timetables that we have now," Mr Price said.
"They have given us the same trains in a new dress."
One thing they had got right in the new design is the new trains have dual-powered technology, he said.
"It is dual powered - diesel and electric - so once it gets to Macarthur they can run on the overhead lines and turn the diesel off," Mr Price said.
"This means less diesel fumes as these trains run into Sydney and also particularly at Central Station."
STRUG also pointed out that if the Southern Line ever was electrified, these trains could run all the way to Canberra on electricity, not diesel.
Other benefits of the new design include that commuters will be able to charge their phones and devices at their seats and that there will be more stable tables for people to work on their laptops. It is believed the new trains also will have WiFi.
Mr Price said STRUG, along with other Regional Rail Action NSW partners, was awaiting a briefing from Transport for NSW on further details about the new trains.
In the meantime, from the artist's impressions, the seats appeared to be hard-moulded foam, he said.
"The photos with the media release appear to show the new 2X2 seats moulded in a hard foam like the current Endeavour trains. We feel these would not be comfortable on long journeys," Mr Price said.
"There is also no mention of floor level luggage space for heavy or large passenger bags and inadequate floor level luggage storage is already a problem in the Xplorer and Endeavours.
"The overhead luggage racks are in the airline-style, so they may not have the same storage capacity as the current trains do.
"The doors may also interfere with access if not maintained."
In a statement, Transport for NSW said the new fleet would feature two classes, premium and economy, with about 40 per cent of seating allocated for premium class.
"The intercity trains and economy class on short and long regional trains will have a two-plus-two seating configuration," they said.
"The new fleet’s Premium Class offers considerable improvements over the current First Class. The shift from current two plus two to a two plus one seating configuration will allow for significantly wider, more spacious seating."