The Observation Car is a passenger car coupled to the back of the Polar Express. Unlike the other cars, the seats inside are sideways, facing away from the walls. The design of the car inside is also different. The back of the car has a patio where passenger can watch the view from the back of the train.


When Billy gets on the train, he decides to sit in the observation car, away from all the other children. After the children are served hot chocolate, Hero Girl and the Conductor go to the observation car to give Billy some.

The Conductor also takes Hero Girl to the observation car after finding out she lost her ticket with Hero Boy following after finding her ticket in the air vent. He asks Billy where they went before seeing their shadow on the train's roof and goes their himself, where he meets the Hobo. The Hobo helps Hero Boy get to the locomotive where he finds Hero Girl driving the train.

Later, Hero Boy and Hero Girl see Billy looking out from the back of the observation car, singing "When Christmas Comes to Town," which Hero Girl eventually joins in. After the song, the Northern Lights from. The Conductor then comes to inform the children that the train has crossed the Arctic Circle before showing them the lights in the distance, which is the North Pole.

When the Conductor and the children get off the train, they notice that Billy is staying behind in the observation car, so Hero Boy and Hero Girl go to try to convince him to come. However, Hero Boy accidentally steps on a lever which uncouples the car from the rest of the train, causing it to roll away down a hill. Hero Boy tries to find the emergency brake, but cannot find it. The Hobo suddenly appears again and taps on the brake wheel before disappearing again. Hero Boy turns the wheel and the car stops on a turntable, which starts to spin. When it stops, the children get off and try to find their way back to the city center.

Before the children get back on the train for the return journey, a couple of the elves use a hand car to re-couple the observation car with the rest of the train. However, Billy decides to sit with all the other children this time.


The observation car is based on a Strasburg Railroad coach, like all the other passenger cars.


The observation car is mostly blue with a red stripe going along the side windows. The roof is black, though this is hardly noticeable due to it being mostly covered in snow. On the back is a symbol, which consists of the letters, "PE" in yellow on a red circle. This livery is shared with all the other passenger cars.

Some merchandise lines portray it with the words, "Polar Express" in yellow on the sides above the windows, like the other passengers cars. In the film, only one of the passenger cars has it.

Preceded by
Passenger Cars
The Polar Express
Observation Car
Followed by

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