Sakura (train)

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JRW N700-7000series S1.jpg
N700-7000 series shinkansen
Service type Shinkansen
First service 1951 (Limited express)
2011 (Shinkansen)
Current operator(s) JR Kyushu, JR West
Line used Kyushu Shinkansen, Sanyo Shinkansen
Rolling stock 800 series/N700-7000 series/N700-8000 series
Operating speed 300 km/h (185 mph) (max.)

The Sakura (さくら?, Cherry Blossom) is a high-speed shinkansen service operated between Shin-Ōsaka and Kagoshima in Japan since 12 March 2011.[1] It was formerly a limited express sleeper train service operated by JR Kyushu, which ran from Tokyo to Nagasaki and Sasebo in Kyushu, Japan. The service was discontinued from the start of the revised timetable on 1 March 2005.


14 series sleeping car at the rear of the Sakura service at Tokyo Station, June 2004

The Sakura was first introduced on 1 April 1951 as a daytime Limited express service between Tokyo and Osaka. This service was discontinued in October 1958.[2]

The Sakura sleeping car service commenced on 20 July 1959 using 20 series sleeping cars. From March 1972, the train was upgraded with 14 series sleeping cars.[2]

From 4 December 1999, the Sakura ran coupled with the Hayabusa service between Tokyo and Tosu.[3] The last services ran on the evening of 28 February 2005.

From 12 March 2011, the Sakura name was revived once again for the new shinkansen services operating between Shin-Osaka and Kagoshima-Chūō using new JR West N700-7000 series and JR Kyushu N700-8000 series 8-car trainsets.[1] Sakura trains operate once every hour between Shin-Osaka and Kagoshima-Chūō throughout the day. There are also additional Sakura services once per hour between Hakata and Kagoshima-Chuo during the morning and evening. During the middle of the day there will be two additional runs per hour: One between Hakata and Kagoshima-Chūō, and one between Hakata and Kumamoto. Some Sakura runs within the Kyushu Shinkansen are operated by 6-car 800 series trains.[4]

Rolling stock[edit]

In the 1990s, the train was formed of up to fourteen 14 series sleeping cars, including two cafeteria cars. The train was hauled by a JR West EF66 electric locomotive between Tokyo and Shimonoseki, a JR Kyushu EF81 electric locomotive between Shimonoseki and Moji (through the undersea Kanmon Tunnel), and by JR Kyushu ED76 electric locomotives from Moji to Nagasaki and Sasebo.[2]


N700 series (8 cars)[edit]

(All cars are no smoking except for smoking compartments in cars 3 and 7.)

←Kagoshima-Chūō Shin-Osaka→
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8

800 series (6 cars)[edit]

(All cars are no smoking.)

←Kagoshima-Chūō Hakata→
1 2 3 4 5 6
  • G: Green car (first class) (reserved seating)
  • R: Standard class reserved seating
  • NR: Standard class non-reserved seating

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b JR Kyushu: "新幹線の列車名決定!!" Retrieved on 26 February 2009. (Japanese)
  2. ^ a b c 列車名鑑1995 [Train Name Directory 1995]. Japan: Railway Journal. August 1995. 
  3. ^ こだわりの新幹線&特急列車ガイド [In-depth Shinkansen & Limited Express Guide]. Japan: Ikaros Publishing. August 2000. ISBN 4-87149-284-2. 
  4. ^ "平成23年春ダイヤ改正" [Spring 2011 timetable revision] (Press release) (in Japanese). JR Kyushu. 2010-12-17. Retrieved 2010-12-19. 

External links[edit]

Media related to Sakura (train) at Wikimedia Commons