France’s TGV has set a new world speed record for a train on rails. It hit just over 574 kilometres per hour on a stretch of track between Paris and the eastern city of Strasbourg.
The existing TGV record, set in 1990, was 515 kilometres per hour. But the train still stands seven kilometres shy of the absolute train speed record set by a Japanese magnetic levitation train in 2003.
Engineers credit the two supercharged locomotives and extra-large wheels for the speed of the so called V-one-fifty.
Manufacturer, Alstom, hopes the test will boost sales abroad, where it is competing with the Japanese Shinkansen and the German Inter-City Express high-speed trains.
Outside France, only South Korea has so far bought the TGVs.
The electrically-powered trains have been operating since 1981, daily reaching speeds of 320 kilometres per hour.
The latest line, opening in July, will reduce the travel time from Paris to Strasbourg from four hours to two hours and 20 minutes.