Japanese 'Bullet' train on display at the National Railway Museum, York, 2003.
© National Railway Museum / Science & Society Picture Library -- All rights reserved
This 82 feet long leading car was built in 1976 as part of a fleet of high-speed trains for the Shinkansen, which literally means 'new main line.' The Shinkansen Line opened from Tokyo to Osaka in 1964 operating with 12-car trains and initially running at a then revolutionary speed of 200 km an hour - which has since increased to speeds up to 300 km an hour. It subsequently extended to connect many of Japan's main centres offering the speed and density of inter-city service the country required, but which could not be provided by the existing network. Car 22-141 was withdrawn from service in October 2000, the last of the first series of cars in service, and was offered to the NRM by West Japan Railways (JR-West).