posted on 15th Feb 2019 11:45
On 14 February 2019 the Seibu Railway Company (Seibu Tetsudō Kabushiki-gaisha), the private operator of the 1,067 mm gauge rail network in northwest Tokyo, the Saitama district, and to the northwest of the Tokyo metropolitan area, presented its new Laview Limited Express EMU. The name of the train comes from an “L” as luxurious, “a” as arrow, and a “view” thanks to its large windows.
Seven Laviews are on order, and during 2019 they will gradually replace the fleet of Seibu Class 10000 “New Red Arrow” EMUs, built by Hitachi between 1993 and 2003 and used on Limited Express services on the 76.8 km Seibu Ikebukuro and Seibu Chichibu Lines between Ikebukuro in northwest Tokyo, Agano (57.8 km) and Seibu Chichibu.
The Laviews are to be put into regular service on 16 March 2019, with tickets going on sale one month beforehand. First Laview train will be in service on six Limited Express train pairs on weekdays, and five at weekends after inauguration, the run between Ikebukuro and Tokorozawa (junction with the Seibu Sayama Line), 24.8 km, taking just 17 minutes on the fastest trains, journey time between Ikebukuro and Seibu-Chichibu being 82 minutes on Limited Expresses. The single fare between Ikebukuro and Seibu-Chichibu is 780 JPY basic fare with Limited Express supplement of 700 JPY including seat reservation. Fares are distance-based.
The Laview Seibu eight car Class 001 EMUs, designed by Kazuyo Sejima, have aluminium bodyshells which have been left in their natural colour. Panoramic windows, 1,580 mm wide and 1,350 mm high, offer a fine view of the passing scenery. The seats, which are adjustable, are shaped like compact armchairs, with yellow upholstery, and fitted with power sockets for laptops and mobile phones. Seibu offers a free on-board WiFi service - all one needs to do to access it is to register using one's e-mail address. The passenger information system incorporated video screens which provide travel information, news items and weather forecasts. The entrance vestibules reflect the seat upholstery with a yellow theme, while the flooring is of artificial marble.
The length of end cars is 20,470 mm and the length of intermediate cars is 20,000 mm. The bodyshell width is 2,814 mm and height is 4,040 mm above rail top. Four cars has powered bogies, equipped with 170 kW asynchronous traction motors and train operate off 1,500 DC. Maximum speed is 120 km/h. A secondary suspension is pneumatic, the pivot span is 13,800 mm.