JR Shikoku’s Refurbished 8000 Series to Debut on December 23, Complete Renovation of 11 Trains by 2027 Fiscal Year

On December 5th, JR Shikoku unveiled the newly refurbished 8000 series, which are used for the ‘Shiokaze’ and ‘Ishizuchi’ limited express services, to the media. The trains will start operating as charter trains on December 23rd and will be deployed on regular services from December 24th onwards.

The 8000 series made its debut in September 1992. A renewal focusing on reserved seating was conducted from 2004 to 2006, and this marks the second round of renovations. The fleet consists of ‘S formations’ of 3-car sets used mainly for the ‘Ishizuchi’ limited express, and ‘L formations’ of 5-car sets including Green cars used mainly for the ‘Shiokaze’ limited express. Of these, S4 formation has been the first to be completely refurbished.

The exterior design retains the concept of ‘Seto’s Gale Wind’ while introducing completely new coloring. Maintaining the texture of the stainless steel body, an orange line representing the mild climate of the Seto Inland Sea and the citrus fruits of Ehime Prefecture runs from the front to the upper sides, complemented by a green line along the lower windows, inspired by Kagawa Prefecture’s famous olives. This color scheme is shared with the 8600 series, also used for the ‘Shiokaze’ and ‘Ishizuchi’ limited expresses, to emphasize their service between Okayama, Takamatsu, and Matsuyama Station.

The reserved seats in Car No. 8, which serves as the lead car in the direction of Okayama and Takamatsu, have been entirely renewed, with power outlets installed in the armrests of all seats. The seat fabric features a warm color scheme inspired by ‘citrus sparkling in the light,’ with yellow and orange hues arranged in an alternating pattern.

The non-reserved seats in Cars 6 and 7 continue to use the current seats but with new upholstery. Designed in blue, the seats are meant to evoke the sea of the Seto Inland Sea. Power outlets have been installed on the window-side walls of each row. Additionally, the smoking area in Car 7 (currently repurposed for telephone use) has been removed to increase seating capacity from 64 to 68 seats.

All carriages now feature LED indirect lighting for the ceiling, illuminating not only the ceiling surface but also the luggage racks, enhancing the sense of openness within the passenger compartment. The sunshades for the windows have also been changed from accordion curtains to roller screens.

In the deck area, the squat toilet in Car 6 has been replaced with a Western-style one, resulting in all toilets onboard being Western-style. Furthermore, the vending machine for beverages in Car 8 has been removed.

Going forward, the remaining formations will be renewed sequentially in line with regular inspections. In fiscal years 2024 and 2025, one L formation and one S formation are scheduled for renovation each year, and in fiscal years 2026 and 2027, two L formations and one S formation each year, with a plan to complete the refurbishment of a total of 11 sets, five S formations and six L formations, by the end of the 2027 fiscal year. The L formations will undergo a renewal that includes wheelchair spaces, a first for JR Shikoku vehicles, and are scheduled to enter service in August 2024.

This article was generated using automatic translation by GPT-4 API.
The translation may not be accurate.
1 2 3 4 5