ALWEG - Hitachi

By far, the most successful manufacturer of Alweg-style monorails is Hitachi of Japan. They have five systems in Japan in operation and two under construction. Hitachi's first system outside of Japan is being built in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. While Walt Disney was placing Alweg technology at Disneyland, Hitachi was introducing it to Japan. This was in 1960. The first Hitachi system was built for the Inuyama Amusement Park near Nagoya in 1962. The latest (but not last) systems are being built for Toyko Disneyland and Naha, Okinawa. Subsequent lines were built over the years. As you can see, this technology is not new, but has evolved over the last 40 years. There are two basic styles of Hitachi monorails- the Tokyo-Haneda style, and the newer large style adopted by the Japanese Monorail Association as the standard for monorails in Japan. In 1985, the Kita-Kyushu Monorail ushered in the era of these tall flat-floor monorails. The bogies that once intruded into the floor were now completely under the floor, and passenger compartment space was now equivalent to standard heavy rail. The downside to these trains are that they are not as aesthetically pleasing as, say, the Disney Mk-VI.

In June of 2002, Hitachi announced the sale of their first Small Hitachi Monorail (pdf) to Sentosa, Singapore. As information becomes available, we will add technical information here.

Hitachi train for Tama Monorail.

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