JR Tokai takes wraps off new maglev

Kyodo

Central Japan Railway Co. (JR Tokai) unveiled Thursday a new maglev train designed for commercial runs at a test line in Tsuru, Yamanashi Prefecture.

The L0 series cars aren’t scheduled to start test runs until an extension of the test line is completed late next year.

JR Tokai said the latest model offers better cabin comfort than the previous test train. The older model’s semicylindrical shape was altered to a more boxlike body. Baggage storage was also expanded.

The lead car’s nose was shortened by 8 meters to provide more passenger cabin space behind.

The L0 train will undergo examinations in the test facility’s yard before the trial runs begin. More cars will eventually be added, bringing the total to 12, a configuration close to what JR Tokai is envisaging for commercial operations.

East Japan Railway Co. on Thursday meanwhile unveiled its new E6 series bullet train, to be called the Super Komachi, at a yard in Rifu, Miyagi Prefecture.

The E6 will debut on the Tokyo-Akita route in March with a top speed of 300 kph, linking the two cities in three hours and 45 minutes on the fastest service, five minutes quicker than the current E3 series Komachi, which tops out at 275 kph.