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British Rail Class 395: Wikis


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British Rail Class 395
Unit 395008 at Ebbsfleet International.JPG
395008 at Ebbsfleet International in 2009
Class 395 MSO Interior.JPG
The interior of a Class 395 MSO vehicle
In service From June 2009
Manufacturer Hitachi Europe
Family name A-train
Constructed 2007 – 2009
Number built 29 trainsets
Formation 6 cars per trainset
Fleet numbers 395001 – 395029
Capacity 340 seats + 12 tip up[1]
Operator Southeastern
Line(s) served High Speed 1
Car body construction Aluminium.
Train length 121.760 metres (399 ft 6 in)
Car length 20.880 metres (68 ft 6 in)
Width 2.810 metres (9 ft 3 in)
Doors Single-leaf sliding.
Maximum speed High Speed 1: 140 mph (225 km/h)
Network Rail: 100 mph (160 km/h)
Weight 275.2 tonnes (270.9 LT; 303.4 ST)
Traction system Hitachi asynchronous of 210 kW.
Electric system(s) Dual-voltage (25 kV AC and 750 V DC)
UIC classification 2'2'+Bo'Bo'+Bo'Bo'+Bo'Bo'+Bo'Bo'+2'2'
Bogies Hitachi.
Braking system(s) Disc, rheostatic and capability for regenerative braking.
Coupling system Scharfenberg.
Multiple working Within class only.
Gauge 1,435 mm (4 ft 8+12 in) Standard gauge
The Class 395 resembles the Japanese 885 Series narrow-gauge EMU

British Rail Class 395[2] is the TOPS classification allocated to a dual-voltage electric multiple unit used by Southeastern for its services along High Speed 1 and onwards to the Kent coast. The trains were built in Japan by Hitachi and shipped to England to operate new high speed domestic services. The trains are the fastest operating domestic service trains in the United Kingdom, running at a maximum speed of 140 mph (225 km/h).

During the 2012 Summer Olympics, Class 395 trains will be used to provide the Javelin shuttle service for visitors to the Olympic Games' main venue in Stratford[3] and so the name Javelin has become a common nickname among some enthusiasts and media.[4]



An order worth £250 million[5] was placed with Hitachi Europe for 28 high-speed ‘A-trains’ in 2004.[6] A twenty-ninth train was later added to the agreement in order to provide additional capacity.

The first train was delivered from Japan to Southampton Docks on 23 August 2007.[7][8] It was then hauled to Ashford in Kent for acceptance testing by Serco. Three more trains were delivered in 2007, with the remainder of the fleet in 2008–2009. The final unit arrived in Southampton on 17 August 2009.[9]

The first of the trains to be delivered was present at the official opening of High Speed 1 and St Pancras station on 6 November 2007.


On 29 June 2009 Southeastern started running a small number of Class 395 trains on a weekday preview service between London St Pancras and Ebbsfleet International, extending to Ashford International during peak hours.[10] On 7 September the service was enhanced with a few services to Ramsgate via Canterbury West or Dover.[11] A regular service commenced on 13 December 2009.[2]

The trains normally run at at 125 mph (201 km/h) on High Speed 1 and if a service is delayed or late running, then 140 mph (225 km/h) is permitted.[12] The trains are restricted to 100 mph (160 km/h) on the South Eastern classic main lines and are based at a £53m five-road depot south of Ashford International railway station in Ashford, Kent, with stabling also at Ramsgate and Faversham.[1][13] They are owned by HSBC Rail, and leased by Southeastern.


The Class 395 units have been designed incorporating elements from Hitachi's A-Train family.[6] They are designed as true high-speed trains, capable of 225km/h, and the bogies have been developed from Japanese shinkansen designs. They also have modular aluminium bodyshells, similar to other members of the A-Train family. The cab designs bear a resemblance to the 885 series EMUs used on limited express services on Japan's narrow gauge network.[14] The units are dual voltage, able to operate using both the OHLE on High Speed 1, and on the third rail system used throughout the Southern Region lines in Kent.

Power Supply (for 140 mph (225 km/h) on High Speed 1) 25 kV AC overhead lines
Power Supply (for 100 mph (160 km/h) on all other lines) 750 V DC third-rail power
Capacity 340 seats + 12 tip up, space for 2 wheelchairs,[1] 508 standing.
On-board systems The train is equipped with GPS positioning equipment and a database to calculate the train’s exact position. The pressure-sealed doors on each car can only be opened with an exact alignment to the platform.
Signalling systems European Rail Traffic Management System ready. TVM430 (on High Speed 1), Train Protection & Warning System (on all other lines). The KVB system is used at St Pancras station.
Safety The train is built to be lightweight using a technique known as friction stir welding, the first time such a technique has been used on a British main line. This was a technique recommended by the Ladbroke Grove Rail Crash enquiry to improve crash resistance. However, unlike TGV family of trains, it is not articulated.
The interior of a PDTSO vehicle

Train formation

The 6-car trainsets consist of:

  • 2 Driving trailer cars each of length 20.65 metres (67.7 ft)
  • 4 Standard motor cars of length 20.0 metres (65.6 ft)

In total the train is 121.8 metres (400 ft) long over the couplings.[15] The train is unusual for a high speed train in that the doors and vestibules are not set at the ends over the bogies as on most long-distance trains (e.g. Mk 4 carriages), but in order to reduce dwell times (i.e. the waiting time at the station) they are set at approximately ¼ and ¾ along the carriage, which allows for faster loading and unloading, like most commuter trains (e.g. Electrostar); this means that the ride quality for passengers sitting over the bogies is diminished (due to transmission of vibration through the floor), though the quality of track on High Speed 1 is relatively high and the trains will not be used at speed on other lines.

The 395 has internally-hung sliding doors, rather than plug doors; this has meant the sacrifice of a smooth external profile. The door system is identical to that in use on the Japanese Shinkansen or bullet train and has over 40 years of operational experience and development.

The Class 395's seating capacity is as follows: Each PDTSO(A) vehicle seats 28, has 12 tip up seats in the wheelchair parking area and one RVAR wheelchair accessible toilet, each MSO vehicle (four per a six carriage EMU train) seats 66 and finally each PDTSO(B) vehicle seats 48 and has one standard toilet [16].

Fleet details

Class Operator No. Built Year Built Cars per Set Unit nos.
Class 395 Southeastern 29 2007 - 2009 6 395001 - 395029
Class 395 Southeastern Diagram.PNG

James May's attempt of largest model railway(UK)

A Hornby Railways "OO" scale model of the Class 395 - the prototype model - covered 7 miles (11 km) of the former North Devon Railway line between Barnstaple and Bideford in August 2009[17], although it failed - the entire route was 10 miles (16 km)[18]. The attempt was filmed for the 'Hornby' episode of "James May's Toy Stories"[19].


  1. ^ a b c Today's Railway UK. February 2009. p. 60. 
  2. ^ a b "Southeastern completes its executive team and welcomes high-speed train experts". 2006-04-18. 
  3. ^ "£20m bullet trains to serve Olympic Park". London 2012. 2004-10-28. Retrieved 2008-12-13. 
  4. ^ "Javelin train speeds into London". BBC News. 2008-12-12. 
  5. ^ "News in Brief". Railway Gazette International. 2005-07-01. 
  6. ^ a b "Hitachi preferred for CTRL domestic trains". Railway Gazette International. 2004-12-01. 
  7. ^ "Hitachi Class 395 EMU arrives in Britain". Railway Gazette International. 2007-08-23. 
  8. ^ "Japanese bullet train docks in UK". BBC News. 2007-08-23. 
  9. ^ "Final Class 395 docks in Southampton". Railway Gazette International. 2009-08-17. 
  10. ^ "Preview timetable". Retrieved 1 June 2009. 
  11. ^ "Preview Timetable". Southeastern Railway. 7 September 2009. Retrieved 7 September 2009. 
  12. ^ Emily Andrews (2009-09-12). "British bullet train will hit 140mph (but only when it's late)". Daily Mail. 
  13. ^ "At home with the High Speed 1 domestic stock". Railway Gazette International. 2007-10-30. 
  14. ^ Class 395 -
  15. ^ 'The Olympic Javelin', Modern Railways - September 2006 (Ian Allan Publishing), P36-37
  16. ^ Platform Five British Railways Pocket Book No. 4 EMUS AND LIGHT RAIL SYSTEMS 2010
  17. ^ "Top Gear presenter changes track". 2009-08-24. Retrieved 2009-12-26. 
  18. ^ "James May's model railway record bid derailed by vandal attack". The Daily Mail. 2009-08-26. Retrieved 2009-12-26. 
  19. ^ "James May's Toy Stories: Hornby". BBC. Retrieved 2009-12-26. 

External links


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