Sunday, 5 June 2016

EMU Keio 9749F: Sanrio Poster Train

Set 9749F of the EMU Keio 9030 series arrives at Keio Tama Center Station

As I posted in my last blog, Keio Electric railway and Sanrio Entertainment Company are jointly promoting tourism to Sanrio Puroland (an indoor theme park), which is located in front of Keio Tama Center Station on the Keio-Sagamihara Line. In accordance with their promotion plan, Keio launched a special poster train on March 12th this year.

The poster train is Set 9749F of the EMU Keio 9030 series. Set 9749F was originally launched in 2009 as the 19th set of the 9030 series. Keio has recently decorated this 10-car train with lovely Sanrio mascots, such as Hello-Kitty, Pomupomu Pudding, Little Twin Stars and Cinnamon Roll. After its debut, the poster train is very popular among kids and their mothers. Interior of the poster train is also decorated with Sanrio characters. For your information, the EMU Keio 9030 series was commissioned in 2005. So far, a total of 20 sets, 200 units, have been built by Nippon Sharyo. The 9030 series is directly operated onto the subway, Toei Shinjuku Line, via Shinjuku Station.

In the meantime, the Keio-Sagamihara Line is known as an access route to Tama Newtown. Connecting Chofu on the Keio Main Line and Hashimoto on the JR East Yokohama and Sagami lines, its route length is 22.6 km. Most of the route is elevated. The track is electrified and double. The electric system is 1,500 V DC overhead. The gauge size is 1,372mm despite most railway track gauges in Japan being 1,067 or 1,435mm. The 1,372mm is quite unique.

Side view of Unit 9799, the EMU Keio 9030 series