V/LINE passengers are facing six days of buses replacing trains on the North East line due to track work.
The disruption follows the release of new figures for service punctuality which show only 43.6 per cent of trains were on time in September.
While the result was abysmal it was an improvement on the record low of 32.1 per cent in August, but still below the July mark of 48.3 per cent.
A V/Line spokesman took some solace from the upturn in September.
"It is encouraging to see performance improve from the previous month and we are continually working towards a better experience for passengers on the Albury line," he said.
However, North East MP and the Opposition regional public transport spokeswoman Steph Ryan said the situation was a disgrace.
"It's the worst-performing line in the state by far and it's the worst performance of the North East line we've ever had (in the past two months)," Ms Ryan said.
Border Rail Action Group member John Dunstan said given the work being undertaken by the Australian Rail Track Corporation it was inevitable trains ran late.
"With the extent of the speed restrictions on the track it's impossible for V/Line to run any of their services on time," Mr Dunstan said.
"The only reason they don't report all the services late is that schedules are very generous and under the quality assurance agreement the train is not late until it's more than 11 minutes late."
The V/Line spokesman said some track speed limits had been removed and pointed to further work.
"We're also undertaking a six-day blitz of track and train maintenance in late October with the ARTC to help reduce the risk of unplanned disruptions," he said.
The replacement of tracks at Southern Cross railway station in Melbourne will result in all Albury services between this Saturday and the following Thursday being replaced with buses.
The Victorian government has said the rolling stock, which dates back to the 1980s, cannot be replaced until the line is fully upgraded by the ARTC.
Ms Ryan has rejected that view.
"There is no reason why we need to wait for the upgrade to the line to run new trains, that's just a furphy that they run to cover their lack of investment," she said.
Public Transport Minister Melissa Horne last month visited the Bombardier factory in Melbourne where new VLocity trains earmarked for the North East are to be built.
She said the trains were to be constructed in 2020 and enter service in 2021.
Ms Ryan said she remained sceptical about the trains being delivered for the North East line given delays with other government projects.