159 series

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159 series
In service 1961–1980
Constructed 1961–1962
Refurbishment 1975
Number built 16 cars (3 sets)
Number in service None
Number preserved None
Formation 4/8 cars per set
Operator(s) JNR
Depot(s) Ogaki
Car body construction Steel
Doors 2 per side
Electric system(s) 1,500 V DC
Track gauge 1,067 mm (3 ft 6 in)

The 159 series (159系) was an electric multiple unit (EMU) train type operated by Japanese National Railways (JNR) from 1961 until 1980.[1] They were originally designed for and used on school excursion trains running between Tokyo and the Nagoya area via the Tokaido Main Line.[1]


Broadly based on the earlier 155 series trains, the 159 series trains were also initially painted in the JNR excursion train livery of "lemon yellow" and "light scarlet".[1]


The fleet consisted of one 8-car and two 4-car sets, formed as shown below, and based at Ogaki Depot in Gifu Prefecture.[2]

8-car set[edit]

Designation Tc M' M T T M' M Tc
Numbering KuHa 159 MoHa 158 MoHa 159 SaHa 159 SaHa 159 MoHa 158 MoHa 159 KuHa 159
  • The MoHa 154 cars were each equipped with one lozenge-type pantograph.[2]

4-car sets[edit]

Designation Tc M' M Tc
Numbering KuHa 159 MoHa 158 MoHa 159 KuHa 159
  • The MoHa 158 cars were each equipped with one lozenge-type pantograph.[2]


  • Tc: driving trailer
  • T: intermediate trailer
  • M: intermediate motor with control equipment
  • M': intermediate motor


The 159 series sets entered service from 2 April 1961 on Komadori (こまどり) school excursion services running on the Tokaido Main Line between Shinagawa Station in Tokyo and Ogaki Station in Aichi Prefecture.[3] Trains carried headboards on the front with the name of the train.[1] An additional four-car set was delivered in 1962 to allow 16-car formations to be run.[2]

The Komadori school excursion services were discontinued in 1973, and the 159 series were reassigned to use on "rapid" limited-stop services and charter train services, repainted into the Shonan livery of orange and green.[2]

The entire fleet was withdrawn from service by fiscal 1980.[1] No 159 series vehicles have been preserved.[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e Matsumoto, Norihisa (April 2014). "初登場の修学旅行電車" [The first school-excursion trains]. Japan Railfan Magazine (in Japanese). Japan: Koyusha Co., Ltd. 54 (636): 126–131. 
  2. ^ a b c d e 写真とイラストで見る国鉄急行型電車のすべて [JNR Express EMUs in pictures]. Japan: Neko Publishing Ltd. 29 November 2013. pp. 40–43. ISBN 978-4-7770-1532-0. 
  3. ^ Teramoto, Mitsuteru (23 July 2001). 国鉄・JR列車名大辞典 [JNR & JR Train Name Encyclopedia]. Tokyo, Japan: Chuoshoin Publishing Co., Ltd. p. 239. ISBN 4-88732-093-0. 
  4. ^ Sasada, Masahiro (September 2012). 国鉄&JR保存車大全 [JNR & JR Preserved Rolling Stock Complete Guide]. Tokyo, Japan: Ikaros Publications Ltd. p. 127. ISBN 978-4863206175.