Keisei New AE Series

The new AE Series (to distinguish from the original AE Series from 1972) is an express EMU operated by the Keisei Electric Railway of Greater Tokyo Area (pop. 34.6 million). It is the designated equipment for the new Skyliner Service on the newly opened 32-mile Narita Sky Access Line in July 2010. The Skyliner offers travellers a third choice in railway connection between Central Tokyo and Narita International Airport aside from the existing Keisei Cityliner on the local line and JR Narita Express. Unlike the JR lines, the Narita Sky Access Line uses the standard 4 ft 8.5 in instead of the 3.5 ft gauge.

The exterior of the new AE Series is designed by Japanese fashion designer Kansai Yamamoto; the musical horn (not uncommon for Japanese express trains) and announcement chime were done by famous Japanese keyboardist Minoru Mikaiya. Six of the eight cars, all equipped with bolsterless bogies, in a AE Series consist are powered by twenty-four 235 hp three-phase AC traction motors with current drawn from the 1.5 kV DC overhead wires using 4 single-arm pantographs mounted on every other car. The top speed of the Skyliner service is 99 mph which makes it one of the fastest non high-speed lines in Japan.

Check out this following film for the AE's musical horn.


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