681 series

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681 series
681-1000 series prototype set, August 2006
In service 1992–Present
Manufacturer Hitachi, Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Kinki Sharyo, Niigata Tekkō
Family name Thunderbird (JR West)
Hakutaka White Wing (JR West)
Snow Rabbit Express (Hokuetsu Express)
Constructed 1992–1997
Number in service 84 vehicles (JR West)
18 vehicles (Hokuetsu Express)
Formation 3/6 cars per trainset
Operator JR West (1992–)
Hokuetsu Express (1997–)
Depot(s) Kyōto, Kanazawa
Line(s) served Tōkaidō Main Line, Kosei Line, Hokuriku Main Line, Nanao Line, Shinetsu Main Line, Jōetsu Line, Hokuetsu Express Hokuhoku Line
Car body construction Steel
Maximum speed 160 km/h (100 mph) (Hokuhoku Line)[1]
130 km/h (80 mph) (JR lines)
Traction system Thyristor drive + Variable frequency (GTO)
Electric system(s) 20 kV AC 60 Hz / 1,500 V DC overhead
Current collection method WPS27C scissors-type pantograph
Braking system(s) Regenerative brake, electronically controlled pneumatic brakes, snow-resistant brake
Safety system(s) ATS-SW, ATS-P
Multiple working 683 series
Track gauge 1,067 mm (3 ft 6 in)

The 681 series (681系?) is an electric multiple unit (EMU) train type operated by West Japan Railway Company (JR West) and Hokuetsu Express on limited express services in Japan.


681-0 series[edit]

Four 6-car sets (T01–T03, T06) and five 3-car sets (T11–T13, T15, T17) are used on Thunderbird services. These trains feature "Thunderbird" branding. Also four 6-car sets (W01–W04) and four 3-car sets (W11–W14) are used on Hakutaka services. These trains feature "White Wing" logos.[2]

681-1000 series[edit]

The prototype 6-car set (T18) and one 3-car set (T07) are used on Thunderbird services.[2]

681-2000 series[edit]

Two 6-car sets (N01–N02) and two 3-car sets (N11–N12) are used on Hokuetsu Express Hakutaka services. These trains feature "Snow Rabbit Express" logos.[2]


See also[edit]

Media related to 681 series at Wikimedia Commons


  • "オールガイド 681・683系 (Full Guide: 681/683 Series)". Japan Railfan Magazine (Japan: Kōyūsha) 49 (577): 56–65. May 2009. 
  • "北越急行681・683系 (Hokuetsu Express 681/683 Series)". Japan Railfan Magazine (Japan: Kōyūsha) 49 (577): 46–55. May 2009. 
  • JR電車編成表 '07冬号 (JR EMU Formations - Winter 2007). Japan: JRR. December 2006. ISBN 4-88283-046-9. 
  1. ^ JR全車両ハンドブック2006 (JR Rolling Stock Handbook 2006). Japan: Neko Publishing. 2006. 
  2. ^ a b c JR電車編成表 2009夏 (JR EMU Formations - Summer 2009). Japan: JRR. June 2009. pp. p132. ISBN 978-4-330-06909-8.