(AFP) – Dec 22, 2007
BEIJING (AFP) — China's first domestically developed high-speed bullet train, capable of reaching 300 kilometres (190 miles) per hour, rolled off the production line on Saturday, state media reported.
"China has joined an elite world club after Japan, France and Germany, to become the fourth country capable of turning out such high speed trains," Wang Yongping, Ministry of Railways spokesman, told Xinhua news agency.
The streamlined train body, made of aluminium alloy, is the lightest of its kind in the world, Wang said.
The eight-carriage train can seat about 600 passengers and will start running the 115-kilometre-long Beijing-Tianjin route before the Beijing Olympics in August 2008, the report said.
It will cut travel time between the two cities to about 30 minutes from the current 80 minutes, Xinhua said.
The manufacturer, Sifang Locomotive and Rolling Stock Co. Ltd., said the first batch of 10 such trains, with a speed equivalent to the Japanese bullet train, will be delivered in the first half of 2008.
Currently, the world's fastest train is France's TGV, which travels at a speed of 320 kilometres per hour.
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