Hitachi Ltd.’s high-speed train for Britain’s rapid-transit system arrived in this southern port on March 12 for test operations.
The Class 800 series train was assembled at Hitachi’s Kasado plant in Yamaguchi Prefecture for the British Department for Transport’s Intercity Express Program (IEP).
The trial operations are scheduled to begin in April, with the Hitachi-made trains starting commercial operations on the route linking Wales and London in 2017. The trains will be introduced to the line connecting the British capital with Scotland in 2018.
Hitachi has received orders for 122 trains, totaling 866 cars, from the British agency. The Japanese company will build the initial 12 trains at its plant in Japan. The remaining 110 trains will be assembled at a plant in Britain that is scheduled for completion this summer.
In July 2012, Hitachi won a 27 and a half year contract to provide maintenance for the IEP trains in addition to the train order.
The Class 800 series train, equipped with an electric-generating diesel engine, can run on both electrified and non-electrified rail lines, according to Hitachi officials.