Top 7 fastest train networks constructed to date

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Many of the fastest train networks in the world are found in Europe and Asia. In Europe for instance, traveling by train has become faster than traveling by plane. Below are the top10 fastest trains in the world ranked by their speed.

1. Shanghai Maglev – Built 2004

Shanghai Maglev

With a maximum operational speed of 430km/h and an average speed of 251kmph, the Shanghai Maglev tops the list of the fastest trains in the world. The train was launched in April 2004. The train runs on the 30.5km Shanghai Maglev Line. It is the first commercially operated high-speed magnetic levitation line and runs from Longyang Road Station of Metro Line 2 to Shanghai Pudong International Airport. The train is owned and operated by Shanghai Maglev Transportation Development Co. (SMTDC) and as constructed by a joint venture of ThyssenKrupp and Siemens.

2. Harmony CRH 380A -Built 2010

Harmony CRH 380A

Harmony CRH 380A has a maximum speed operational speed of 380kmph, making it the second-fastest train in the world. Train set the record by speeding at 486.1kmph during its trial operation on the Shanghai-Hangzhou intercity high-speed railway in December 2010. Harmony CRH 380A started operations in October 2010 and operates from Beijing to Shanghai. The train also offers daily services between Wuhan and Guangzhou.

The electric multiple unit (EMU) is vibration-free and was constructed by CSR Qingdao Sifang Locomotive & Rolling Stock. The train’s high speed is a product of research conducted by carious Chinese universities.

3. AGV Italo – Built 2012

AGV Italo

Italy’s AGV Italo is the first fastest train in the AGV Series and was launched in April 2012. The third fastest train in the world has a maximum operational speed of 360kmph. One of the unique features of AGV Italo is a traction system that broke a record speed of 574.8kmph in April 2007. The train was constructed by Alstom and is considered to be one of the most modern trains in Europe. The train currently operates along the Napoli – Roma – Firenze – Bologna – Milano line.

4. Fuxing Hao CR400AF/BF – Built 2016

Fuxing Hao CR400AF/BF

With a capacity of more than 550 passengers and able to run between Shanghai and Beijing in just five hours, the Fuxing Hao CR400 is the third fastest train in the world. The name of the train means revitalization. There are two trains that operate on this line-“Dolphin Blue” and “Golden Phoenix.” The high-speed train was launched in 2016.

5. Siemens Velaro E / AVS 103 – Built 2007

Siemens Velaro E / AVS 103

With a maximum speed of 217.4 mph, Velaro E is the Spanish version of Velaro E high-speed trains manufactured by Siemens, a German engineering company. It is one of the fastest train networks in the world. The Velaro E always takes two and a half hours to move passengers between Barcelona and Madrid. The train once achieved a maximum speed of 250.84 during its trial.

The high-speed Velaro E trains were ordered by the Spanish National Railways in 2001 and high-speed services officially launched in 2007.

6. Shinkansen H5 and E5 – Built 2016

Shinkansen H5 and E5

This was among the first and only bullet trains for a long time. Japan was the pioneer of the modern high-speed railway network. Shinkansen moves around Tokyo and goes all the way to Sapporo in the north and Nagasaki in the south. The railway network has nine operational routes and another four are set to be launched by 2023. There are several types of bullet trains and the H5, which started services in 2016 is the fastest.

7. Haramain Western Railway – Built 2018

Haramain Western Railway

The Haramain Western Railway is a high-speed train linking Mecca and Medina. It is one of the fastest train networks in the world. The train covers 281 miles between the two of Saudi Arabia’s most holy cities. The train takes two and a half hours to cover the full length compared to five hours by car. Haramain carries around three million passengers per year, including during Umrah and Hajj pilgrims.