Japan Introduces the World’s First Bus-Train

Japan recently unveiled the world’s first Dual-Mode Vehicle (DMV), a contraption that runs both on roads like a bus and on rails like a train. The mini-bus-like vehicle hasn’t one anybody over with its looks, but it has definitely made an impression in terms of practicality. It runs with normal rubber tires on the road, but when it needs to switch to train mode, a pair of metal wheels drop down from the vehicle’s underbelly. The front tires are lifted off the track, while the rear wheels stay down to propel the vehicle. Switching between road and train modes only takes about 15 seconds. The diesel-powered DMV can carry up to 21 passengers and travel at a speed of 37 mph in train mode and 60 mph as a bus. In rural areas, with an aging population, the bus-train is expected to be a very good mode of public transportation.