Time is ticking for China’s new passenger train

By Katie Chrystal

BBC News, Beijing

Dr Cheng Qingliang says the train is faster than many bullet trains in China The engineers who created the 670kph (405 mph) prototype that will run in Beijing have now checked it again, to make sure it is still going fast. China’s new “pioneer” train needs to be as smooth as a Rolls Royce in order to be competitive with the latest European trains. It is described as China’s fastest, and also the safest train ever, but without thundering metallic steel in the treetops, such a sight would be quite unthinkable. Before its unveiling, officials said the train would no longer become a curiosity – it was supposed to be fast, quiet and comfortable. As the whistle sounded – instantly giving people who stood in the corridor of the test track the chill that accompanies the sound of a train whistle – it showed some of those expectations were on track. But the design does require every moment of every trip to be carefully prepared. Engineers lay special tracks by laying a series of small stones on the road, literally creating a squeaky record for the white train. The super-speedy train runs on only three tracks and is used for testing new technologies. The new Chinese train first runs in May I took the first jaunt on one of the highly-anticipated trip plans.

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