ONE train – FIVE names – SIX different colours !
Japan is well know for it’s variety of colourful trains, but in this case I think they have even outdone themselves …
- In 1988, JR Kyushu took delivery of the sole Kiha183-1000 4 car diesel set to be used on ‘Joyful Train’ service. Because of the original Dutch influence in the Nagasaki area, it was called the ‘Holland Village Express’, and painted in a red/white/blue livery.
- In 1992, the train was repainted an overall pale green colour with gold striping & lettering and named ‘Yufuin no Mori II’ (The Forest of Yufuin 2) to augment the current Kiha71 version of the ‘Yufuin no Mori’ which was built in 1989.
- When the KiHa72 ‘New Yufuin no Mori’ version was delivered in 1999, the KiHa183-1000 was returned to the original red/white/blue livery, but this time named ‘Seibold’.
- 2004 saw the next change of colour and name – this time it was painted in an overall maroon color with gold lettering and named ‘Yufu Dx‘ (Yufu Deluxe).
- In 2008 the name was kept the same, but the colour this time was an overall bright yellow with green lettering !
- The train is said to be scheduled for withdrawal in 2011 – and returned to service later in the year as ‘Aso Boy’ and will be black & white with cute animals all over it (link)
Model manufacturer ‘MicroAce’ has released the first 5 of these variations – the ’Holland Village Express’ (A8246) & maroon ‘Yufu Dx’ (A8259) in July 2005, the ‘Yufuin no Mori’ (A8247) in October 2006 and the ‘Seibold’ (A8248) & yellow ‘Yufu Dx’ (A8261) in November 2010 (with a 5% price increase). So technically even if you bought all of these models, you could never run more than one of them at the same time
Here are the pictures of the models (the ‘Yufuin no Mori’ & ‘Aso Boy’ look different to the others only because they are in a different car order) …