Crimson bullet trains drive fans wild (pictures)
The crimson bullet
The new E6 Series Super Komachi bullet train, seen here during testing, links Tokyo with Akita in northern Japan. Its bold design is matched by a maximum speeds of 320 kph (nearly 200 mph), placing it among the fastest commercial trains in the world.
Built by Kawasaki Heavy Industries and Hitachi, the Super Komachi Shinkansen, or bullet train, has a long nose to help reduce aerodynamic pressure in tunnels. The nose cone opens for coupling with other trains.
The Super Komachi's tapered cockpit sits atop a nose that's 23 feet longer than that of its predecessor, the E3 Series Komachi.
The control consoles in the Super Komachi are relatively simple.
Life on a northern train
Passengers settle into their seats on the Super Komachi before departure from Tokyo Station. The interior color scheme is meant to evoke the northern prefecture of Akita, which is famous for its rice and sake.
Boy meets train
A boy gets a close-up view of the Super Komachi. Operator JR East has promoted the bullet trains with posters than emphasize their design.
Rail fans jostle to take photos of the Super Komachi bullet train as it pulls out of Tokyo Station, bound for northern Japan. A trip to its terminus at Akita Station costs 17,650 yen ($187) and takes 3 hours and 51 minutes.