TAKAMATSU--Shikoku Railway Co. (JR Shikoku) will start running its YuYu Anpanman Car with a new exterior design from October.
The sightseeing train service featuring Anpanman and other characters from the superhero anime series is operated between Takamatsu and Tokushima, and also between Tokushima and Awa-Ikeda stations.
The theme of the new exterior design is "smile," according to the operator. In addition to Anpanman, his creator Uncle Jam, archenemy Baikinman and other familiar characters with a big smile are featured on the body of the train to welcome passengers.
The train had previously been painted in blue as its main color, but it will be changed to a sun-inspired yellow.
Celebrating the 15th anniversary of the service, a retail space for related products will also be set up inside.
The Anpanman Car trains have been ridden by more than 160,000 passengers since October 2002.
The Anpanman Car is a two-car train connected to a limited express train, with one car equipped with 20 seats while the other used as a playroom where passengers can take off their shoes and have fun.
The new exterior design coincides with retail space in the passenger section of the train where travelers can buy Anpanman-related goods. They can also take delivery of their pre-ordered Anpanman-themed "bento" lunch boxes, according to JR Shikoku.