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300 series
JRW Shinkansen Series 300 F6.jpg
JR West 300-3000 series trainset on the Sanyō Shinkansen, October 2008
In service 1992–Present
Manufacturer Hitachi Ltd., Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Kinki Sharyo, Nippon Sharyo
Constructed 1990–1998
Number built 1,104 vehicles (69 sets)
Number in service 720 vehicles (45 sets) (as of Aug 2009)[1]
Number preserved 1 vehicle
Formation 16 cars per trainset
Fleet numbers J1–J61, F1–F9
Capacity 1,323 (200 Green + 1,123 Standard)
Operator JR Central, JR West
Depot(s) Tokyo, Osaka, Hakata
Line(s) served Tōkaidō Shinkansen, Sanyō Shinkansen
Car body construction Aluminium
Car length 25,000 mm (intermediate cars), 26,050 mm (end cars)
Width 3,380 mm
Height 4,440 mm
Doors Two per side
Maximum speed 270 km/h
Acceleration 1.6 km/h/s
Traction system 40 x 300 kW
Power output 12 MW
Electric system(s) 25 kV AC, 60 Hz
Current collection method Overhead catenary
Gauge 1,435 mm

The 300 series (300系 ?) is a Japanese high-speed Shinkansen train type introduced in 1992 on the Tōkaidō and Sanyō Shinkansen lines for use on the fastest Nozomi services, being capable of 270 km/h (168 mph). As more were delivered (66 trains by 1998) they replaced earlier units on Hikari service and allowed the thus displaced 100 series units to finally in turn displace 0 series units on almost all services.

The styling of these units is something of a 'curved wedge' at the front, replacing the aircraft-style nosecones of previous Shinkansen trains. The furthest forward point is the very bottom of the pilot. They are painted brilliant white with a medium-thick blue stripe beneath the windows.

They are only found in sixteen-car sets and have no restaurant cars, though they did originally feature two refreshment counters (later removed).

Technically, they are notable for being the first Shinkansen sets to employ three-phase AC traction motors instead of direct current units, as well as new bolsterless bogies to reduce weight.

Following the introduction of the N700 series, withdrawals of the first revenue-earning 300 series trainsets started in July 2007 with the withdrawal of set J14.




JR Central J sets

60 16-car sets (excluding pre-production set J1) operated by Central Japan Railway Company (JR Central). These sets were delivered between February 1992 and October 1998.[2]

In December 1998, set J59 was fitted experimentally with new 700 series style single-arm pantographs and fairings to reduce noise and air resistance. Following testing, JR Central subsequently fitted new pantographs to all of its sets, with modifications completed by late 2002.

In October 2004, JR Central announced plans for ride improvement modifications to its 300 series fleet involving the addition of semi-active vibration control units to seven cars out of the total of sixteen in each set (end cars 1 and 16, pantograph cars 6 and 12, and Green cars 8 to 10), and also new non-linear air suspension on all cars in each set. The new secondary suspension offers firmer support against lateral movement. The entire fleet operated by JR Central received the modifications by February 2007.

With the entry into service of new N700 series trains, withdrawals of production 300 series sets began in July 2007 with the withdrawal of set J14.

JR West 300-3000 series F sets

Nine 16-car sets operated by West Japan Railway Company (JR West).

These sets were delivered between December 1992 and September 1993.[2]

Pre-production 300-9000 series set

Prototype set J1 near Hamamatsu Station on a test run, April 2003

The pre-production unit, J0, numbered in the 300-9000 series, was delivered on 8 March 1990, and underwent extensive testing and endurance running before the start of the new Nozomi services in March 1992. In the early hours of 1 March 1991, this set recorded a speed of 325.7 km/h on the Tōkaidō Shinkansen between Maibara and Kyoto, a Japanese national speed record at the time.

The set was modified to production standards in March 1993, becoming set "J1", but it differed from the production units in a number of ways. Visually, the driving cab had a different windscreen design, different headlight arrangement, and flared side panels over the front bogies. The prototype set was initially fitted with five pantographs, but this was later reduced to two in line with modifications to the production fleet. Limited water tank capacity meant that the unit was not capable of running return trips from Tokyo to Hakata, and was normally restricted to Tokyo to Osaka/Okayama/Hiroshima workings.

From 2001 onwards, this unit was converted for use as a JR Central test train for testing new digital ATC equipment on the Tokaido Shinkansen. It was finally withdrawn in March 2007. All cars except one end car, 322-9001 were cut up.[3]



  • January 1988: Development project commences.
  • 8 March 1990: Pre-production 300-9000 series set (J0) is delivered.
  • April 1990: Test running starts.
  • October 1990: Speed of 303.1 km/h is recorded during test running.
  • 1 March 1991: Speed of 325.7 km/h is recorded during test running.
  • July 1991: Endurance test running starts. (Continues until March 1992.)
  • February 1992: First production set (J2) is delivered.
  • March 1992: Entry into service on Tokaido Shinkansen Nozomi services running at a maximum speed of 270 km/h.
  • June 1992: 300-9000 series set is tested on Sanyo Shinkansen.
  • December 1992: First JR West 300-3000 series (F) set is delivered.
  • March 1993: Hourly through Nozomi services are introduced between Tokyo and Hakata.
  • 10 March 1993: Pre-production set J0 is modified to full-production standard and renumbered J1.
  • April 1994: Sets from J16 onward delivered with regular sliding doors in place of earlier plug doors.
  • August 1995: Sets from J30 onward delivered with two pantographs in place of the earlier three. Modifications started on earlier sets to reduce number of pantographs to two.
  • March 1996: Maximum speed of Hikari services is raised to 270 km/h.
  • October 1998: 300 series production ends.
  • September 1999: Modifications started (from set J9) to convert pantographs to single-arm type with shrouds resembling 700 series design.
  • December 2001: 300 series removed from regularly scheduled Nozomi services.
  • July 2007: First 300 series set (J14) is withdrawn from service.

(Source: [2])

Preserved examples

Preserved car 322-9001 of prototype set J1 at Hamamatsu Works, July 2007

See also


  • JR全車両ハンドブック2006 (JR Rolling Stock Handbook 2006). Japan: Neko Publishing. 2006.  
  • JR電車編成表 '07冬号 (JR EMU Formations - Winter 2007). Japan: JRR. December 2006. ISBN 4-88283-046-9.  
  • Semmens, Peter (1997). High Speed in Japan: Shinkansen - The World's Busiest High-speed Railway. Sheffield, UK: Platform 5 Publishing. ISBN 1-872524-88-5.  
  1. ^ "新幹線最前線2010". Japan Railfan Magazine (Japan: Kōyūsha) 49 (584): p.9–57. December 2009.  
  2. ^ a b c "東海道新幹線各駅停車 車両編". Japan Railfan Magazine (Japan: Kōyūsha) 43 (506): p.48–68. June 2003.  
  3. ^ プロトタイプの世界 / Prototype World. Japan: Kōtsū Shimbunsha. 2005. pp. 94–95. ISBN 4910065141258.  
  4. ^ 鉄道のテクノロジー Vol.1 新幹線 (Railway Technology Vol.1: Shinkansen). Japan: San-ei. 2009. ISBN 978-4-7796-0534-5.  


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