Photo/IllutrationThe first car of the Alfa-X, the next-generation Shinkansen, whose designers hope will run at 360 kph, is shown to the media in Kobe’s Hyogo Ward on Dec. 12. (Ayateru Hosozawa)

  • Photo/Illustraion

KOBE--East Japan Railway Co. rolled out on Dec. 12 the prototype of the Alfa-X, a next-generation Shinkansen, which aims to hit a speed of 360 kph and become the world's fastest train.

One of two Alfa-X models was shown to reporters at the Hyogo Works of Kawasaki Heavy Industries Ltd. in the city’s Hyogo Ward.

The bullet train's first car features a surprisingly long nose.

The sides of the 16-meter-long nose have a whittled design that aims to help it aerodynamically slash through pressure waves that are produced when a train enters a tunnel.

All 10 cars of the Shinkansen will be completed before it begins running along the Tohoku Shinkansen Line in a pilot program no later than May 2019.