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China unveils new 350-km-per-hour bullet train
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China's first domestically produced train, able to reach 350 kilometers per hour, rolled off the production line on Friday.

The train, the latest model in the China Railway High-speed series, was produced in the northern city of Tangshan by the China Northern Locomotive and Rolling Stock Industry Corp.

The eight-carriage train, with its streamlined body made of light aluminium alloy, can seat 557 passengers.

Three such trains would begin service on the new 120-kilometer Beijing-Tianjin route before the Olympics starts in August, the manufacturer said.

In all, 57 such trains are expected to be in commercial operation by the end of 2009.

The train is based on the Siemens ICE 3. The manufacturer said it started to cooperate with the technical support provider in 2005 and created its own platform based on the world top technology.

China unveiled the first indigenous 300-kph train in December, becoming the fourth country - after France, Germany and Japan - capable of making such high speed trains, according to the Ministry of Railways.

The 300-kph train will also start running between Beijing and Tianjin before the Olympics, reducing the journey time from the current 80 minutes to half an hour.

(Xinhua News Agency April 11, 2008)
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