Japan's maglev L0 Series is clear winner in this list from Engineering Magazine, Engineering8, with a speed of 603 km/h (although it has not been commercialized… yet). But who else has made the list?
Tenth place, 300X.
300X or Class 955 is the Shinkansen trial model introduced in 1992. Six total units were produced by four different vendors with little variations among them. In July 1996, unit 6 which is the last unit managed to clock a staggering 443 km/h (275 mph) in test-running and became Shinkansen’s fastest train record even now.
Ninth place, Transrapid 07.
Germany's transrapid development began in 1969. 19 years later, the seventh generation model registered maximum cruising of 450 km/h (280 mph) along one-year-old Emsland test-run facility. Until today, it remains the fastest rail record in Germany.
Eighth place, CRH380A.
China relied on foreign trains for their first generation fleet. However, they have craziest long rail viaduct all over. In early 2008, a development of home-grown high-speed trains began with a target of commercial speed of 380 km/h. On December 3rd, 2010; the train reached 486.1 km/h (302 mph) during 220 km test-run.
Seventh place, CRH380BL.
Derived from Germany's Siemens Velaro, 100 units of CRH380BL were built locally by China Northern Railways Company. During a subsequent test on January 10th, 2011; these trainsets broke China’s own record of 487.3 km/h (303 mph); that’s about 1.2 km/h faster.
Sixth place, Transrapid SMT.
The only commercial version of Transrapid train began its operation between Shanghai International Airport and Longyang Road Station with a travel distance of 30 km. Albeit able to reach 501 km/h (311 mph), the daily operating speed is capped at 431 km/h (268 mph) which was already the fastest commercial speed during that time.
Fifth place, TGV Atlantique.
TGV Atlantique is the 2nd TGV model introduced by Alstom in 1989 for France high-speed rail service. On 18th May, TGV Atlantique trainset 308 cruised along LGV Atlantique railway line with peak of 515.3 km/h (320 mph). It was the fastest commercial train model on the planet.
Fourth place, ML-500.
Miyazaki test track was built at the length of 7 km with monorail track upon opening in 1977, but changed to U-shape in late 1980. The first trial train model, ML-500, was built specifically to become the first ever train to break 500km/h (311 mph) speed mark.
Third Place, TGV POS.
A series of test runs were conducted on the LGV Est prior to its June 2007 opening using a specially modified train. On April 3rd 2007, top speed of 574.8 km/h (357 mph) was reached, making it the fastest wheeled train on the planet.
Second Place, MLX01.
Yamanashi test track is the third generation track specifically for testing maglev train at the length of 43 km. Upon its completion, MLX01 trains were introduced in 1997. In 2003, the train clocked at crazy 581 km/h (361 mph).
First Place, L0 Series.
When the MLX01 service was terminated in 2011, JR Central, the body which governs Japan research in train introduced a new train model called L0 Series. L0 Series was shown to public in November 2012. On April 21st, 2015; a seven-car train set a new land speed record for rail vehicles at 603 km/h (375 mph). It is the only rail vehicle ever surpassed 600 km/h speed mark.
You may also be interested in....
Contributors wanted: Middle East Mobility 2.0 – the digital revolution.