E5 series shinkansen on a Hayabusa service, March 2011
1 October 1958 (Limited express)
5 March 2011 (Shinkansen)
|Current operator(s)||JR East|
|Distance travelled||674.9 km (419.4 mi)|
|Service frequency||3 return trips daily|
|Line used||Tohoku Shinkansen|
|Class(es)||Standard + Green + Gran Class|
|Catering facilities||Trolley service|
|Rolling stock||E5 series|
|Track gauge||1,435 mm (4 ft 8 1⁄2 in)|
|Electrification||25 kV AC overhead|
|Operating speed||320 km/h (200 mph)|
The Hayabusa (はやぶさ, literally Peregrine Falcon) is a high-speed Shinkansen service operated by East Japan Railway Company (JR East) between Tokyo and Shin-Aomori in Japan since 5 March 2011. The name was formerly used for a limited express sleeping car service operated by JR Kyushu, which ran from Tokyo to Kumamoto, and was discontinued in March 2009.
From the start of the new timetable on 5 March 2011, there were initially three services in each direction daily, which had increased to ten services in each direction daily by October 2013, stopping at the following stations.
(*) Not served by all trains
The fastest service from Tokyo to Shin-Aomori takes 2 hours and 59 minutes.
|Class||Standard||Standard||Standard||Standard||Standard||Standard||Standard||Standard||Green car||Gran Class|
Hayabusa trains feature premium GranClass accommodation with 2+1 leather seating and complimentary food and drinks, including alcohol.
Sleeping car service (1958–2009)
The Hayabusa service commenced on 1 October 1958, operating between Tokyo and Kagoshima. From 20 July 1960, the train was upgraded with 20 series sleeping cars, and extended to run to and from Nishi-Kagoshima (now Kagoshima-Chūō). From 9 March 1975, the train was upgraded with 24 series sleeping cars.
Dining car service was discontinued from March 1993.
From 1 March 2005, the Hayabusa was combined with the Fuji service between Tokyo and Moji, following the discontinuation of the Sakura service which previously operated in conjunction with the Hayabusa.
Shinkansen service (2011–)
Sleeping car service
In its final days, the limited express train was formed of 14 series sleeping cars based at JR Kyushu's Kumamoto Depot, typically consisting of six cars in the Hayabusa portion and six cars in the Fuji portion. The train was hauled by a JR West EF66 electric locomotive between Tokyo and Shimonoseki, a JR Kyushu EF81-400 electric locomotive between Shimonoseki and Moji (through the undersea Kanmon Tunnel), and by a JR Kyushu ED76 electric locomotive from Moji to Kumamoto.
ED76 on a Hayabusa service, March 2010
14 series coach at rear of Hayabusa service, March 2010
Locomotive types used
- EF60-500 (Tokyo - Shimonoseki, from 29 December 1963)
- EF65-500 (Tokyo - Shimonoseki, from 1 October 1965)
- EF65-1000 (Tokyo - Shimonoseki, from July 1978)
- EF66 (Tokyo - Shimonoseki, from 14 March 1985)
The new shinkansen Hayabusa services use 10-car E5 series sets, which initially operated at a maximum speed of 300 km/h between Utsunomiya and Morioka. The maximum speed was raised to 320 km/h from the start of the revised timetable on 16 March 2013. From the same date, some services run coupled to E6 series Super Komachi services between Tokyo and Morioka. These services were limited to a maximum speed of 300 km/h. Since 15 March 2014, the name of Super Komachi services was returned simply to Komachi, and the maximum speed has been raised to 320 km/h; from the same date, some Hayabusa services are operated by 10-car E5 series sets coupled to 7-car E6 series sets.
From 26 March 2016, with the opening of the Hokkaido Shinkansen from Shin-Aomori to Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto, the Hayabusa name will be used for services operating between Tokyo, Sendai, and Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto. From the start of the 26 March 2016 timetable revision, ten return services will operate daily between Tokyo and Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto, and one return service daily will operate between Shin-Aomori and Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto.
- JR Timetable, October 2013 issue. p.62-75
- HayabusaOfficial JR East site for E5 series (Japanese)