French engineering firm Alstom unveiled its successor the the TGV today, the AGV. Standing for Automotrice Grande Vitesse, the train, which boasts an individual engine beneath each carriage, can travel at speeds of up to 360kph. Up to 700 passengers can be transported at a time, and less fuel is used, as the AGV is lighter than its elder sister and consumes up to 30 per cent less energy. More info below the gallery.
The AGV—translated, it means "high-speed, self-propelled carriage" was unveiled by Nicolas Sarkozy (who, given his recent marriage to former supermodel Carla Bruni, is probably no stranger to le petit train pulling into the station at regular intervals) at a ceremony in La Rochelle today. Italy has already bought a stack of AGVs and plans to run them on its own rail network from 2011. [BBC News and Railway Gazette]