The Hayabusa bullet train debuted Saturday on the Tohoku Shinkansen Line, thrilling rail fans and people living in northern Japan, following the route’s extension in December to Aomori.
The green and silver train is the first new model deployed by East Japan Railway Co. since December 1997. It can speed along at up to 300 kph and, at 15 meters, has the longest nose of any shinkansen.
It links Tokyo with Shin-Aomori Station in three hours and 10 minutes on its fastest run, 10 minutes less than the older Hayate. JR East says it aims to raise the top speed to 320 kph and shave the time to three hours and five minutes in spring 2013.
The first train departed snow-dusted Shin-Aomori Station at 6:10 a.m. following a ceremony jazzed up by local festival music.
Read the rest of the story: Hayabusa bullet train up and running.