H5 series
A digitally-altered image showing how the H5 series trains are expected to appear
Manufacturer Hitachi, Kawasaki Heavy Industries
Constructed 2014–2015
Entered service March 2016 (scheduled)
Number under construction 20 vehicles (2 sets)
Number built 20 vehicles (2 sets)
Number in service None
Formation 10 cars per trainset
Fleet numbers H1–H4
Capacity 731 (658 Ordinary, 55 Green, 18 Gran Class)
Operator(s) JR Hokkaido
Line(s) served Tohoku Shinkansen, Hokkaido Shinkansen
Car body construction Aluminium alloy
Maximum speed 320 km/h (200 mph)
Electric system(s) 25 kV AC, 50 Hz overhead catenary
Current collection method Pantograph
Track gauge 1,435 mm (4 ft 8 12 in)

The H5 series (H5系) is a Japanese Shinkansen high-speed train type on order by Hokkaido Railway Company (JR Hokkaido) for use on Hokkaido Shinkansen services starting when the line opens in March 2016.[1][2] Based on the earlier E5 series trains, a total of four 10-car sets are on order, to be built by Hitachi and Kawasaki Heavy Industries at a cost of approximately 18 billion yen.[2] The first two sets were delivered in October 2014.


The H5 series is directly based on the E5 series trains operated by JR East on the Tohoku Shinkansen since 2011, and will have an identical maximum operating speed of 320 km/h (200 mph), although this will be limited to 260 km/h (160 mph) on the Hokkaido Shinkansen, and to 140 km/h (85 mph) on the shared track running through the undersea Seikan Tunnel connecting Hokkaido with mainland Honshu.[3] All cars feature active suspension, and tilt by up 1.5 degrees through curves, allowing the maximum speed of 320 km/h to be maintained even on curves with a radius of 4,000 m.[3]


The exterior finish of the trains is similar to the JR East E5 series, with a colour scheme of "Tokiwa" (常盤) green for the upper body and "Hiun" (飛雲) white for the lower body, separated by a "Saika" (彩香) purple stripe intended to evoke images of lilac, lupin, and lavender flowers for which Hokkaido is famous.[4] Bodyside logos are carried on cars 1, 3, 5, 7, and 10.[5]


The trains have three classes of accommodation: premium Gran Class (car 10), Green class (car 9), and Ordinary class (cars 1 to 8).[3]

Gran Class

Car 10 (at the northern end) is designated "Gran Class", featuring 18 seats arranged in 2+1 abreast configuration with a seat pitch of 1,300 mm (51.2 in).[4] AC power outlets are provided for all seats.[4] The carpet in the Gran Class car is blue with a pattern intended to evoke images of Hokkaido's sea and lakes.[6]

Green car

Car 9 is designated as "Green car" (first class) accommodation with 55 seats arranged in 2+2 abreast configuration and a seat pitch of 1,160 mm (45.7 in).[4] AC power outlets are provided for all seats.[4] The carpet in the Green car is dark grey with a pattern depicting the ocean with fragments of drift ice.[6]

Ordinary class

Ordinary class (cars 1 to 8) accommodation is arranged in 3+2 abreast configuration with a seat pitch of 1,040 mm (40.9 in).[4] AC power outlets are provided for all seats.[4] The interior of the ordinary-class cars is intended to evoke images of snow and the night view of Hakodate.[6]


The 10-car sets, numbered "H1" onward, are formed with eight motored ("M") cars and two non-powered trailer ("T") cars.[3] Car 1 is at the southern end.[3] Cars 3 and 7 each have one N-PS208 single-arm pantograph.[3]

Car No. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
Designation T1c M2 M1 M2 M1k M2 M1 M2 M1s Tsc
Numbering H523 H526-100 H525 H526-200 H525-400 H526-300 H525-100 H526-400 H515 H514
Capacity 29 100 85 100 59 100 85 100 55 18
Facilities Toilet   Toilet, cardphone   Toilet, AED, cardphone, wheelchair space   Toilet   Toilet, wheelchair space, conductor's compartment  


Details of the new trains on order were announced by JR Hokkaido in April 2014.[1] The first set, H1, was shipped from Kawasaki Heavy Industries in Kobe to Hakodate Depot in October 2014.[7] The second set was also delivered in October 2014.[8]

In November 2014, JR Hokkaido officially announced details of the bodyside logos to be applied to the trains, combining an outline of Hokkaido with an image intended to portray the gyrfalcon native to Hokkaido.[5]

Slow-speed test-running on the Hokkaido Shinkansen tracks within Hokkaido commenced from 1 December 2014, with the maximum speed of 260 km/h reached on 26 December.[9]

Future plans

The remaining two sets on order are scheduled to be delivered in 2015.[10]

Fleet history

As of 1 April 2015, the fleet is as follows.[11]

Set number Manufacturer Date delivered
H1 Kawasaki Heavy Industries 1 November 2014
H2 Hitachi 8 November 2014
H3 2015
H4 2015

See also


  1. ^ a b
  2. ^ a b
  3. ^ a b c d e f
  4. ^ a b c d e f g
  5. ^ a b
  6. ^ a b c
  7. ^
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^
  11. ^

External links

  • JR Hokkaido press release (16 April 2014) (Japanese)