The N700S will start running in 2020 on the Tokaido Shinkansen Line between Tokyo and Shin-Osaka. The new model of bullet train will have cutting-edge new features which reduce air resistance and noise in comparison to current models. It will be the first fully remodeled bullet train in 13 years.
The front of the train will appear more streamlined and angular, and the interior will also have new features to make journeys more comfortable for passengers. The reclining seats will be specially-designed so the backrest and seat move in tandem and all seats will have a power point for mobile devices.
On July 10, Central Japan Railway Co. conducted a test run for the media of its new battery-powered shinkansen at their Mishima depot in Shizuoka prefecture. The company believes the lithium-ion battery self-propulsion system will be extremely useful during power outages. Trains that otherwise might be left stranded in bridges or tunnels will be able to operate catenary-free at low speed to the nearest station. Four of the N700S train’s 16 carts will carry batteries on the underside of its carriages.
The N700 series is already operating on the Tokaido and Sanyo Lines (with the Nozomi, Kodama, and Hikari trains, the last two included with the Japan Rail Pass). A record maximum speed of 332km/h was reached in 2009 between Maibara and Kyoto during the series’ high-speed trials. This fleet of bullet trains is due to enter service in the Tokaido Shinkansen in July 2020, in time for the 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympics.
The N700A was launched in 2013, and the ‘A’ suffix stands for ‘Advanced’. The suffix of the N700S stands for ‘supreme’ to signify the progression in design, technology, and comfort. It will be the 6th-generation model of the N700 series, and it is intended to be the best.
Other technological improvements will include the utilization of a new type of active suspension will make journeys feel smoother. There will also be refinements to the ATC (Automatic Train Control) and the braking systems to allow for shorter braking distances in the event of emergencies.
Credit for images by Kyodo News photographers