Manufacturing work has begun on 65 new trains for the East Coast main line.
Virgin Trains' Azuma fleet will provide an extra 12,200 seats, increasing capacity into London King's Cross by 28% during peak times.
Work on the body shells has begun in Kasado, Japan, before the trains arrive in the UK to be built at Hitachi's factory in Newton Aycliffe, County Durham, from this summer.
Up to 22 minutes will be sliced off East Coast journeys as they will accelerate from 0-125mph around a minute quicker than current trains.
Virgin Trains East Coast managing director David Horne said:
Hitachi Rail Europe managing director Karen Boswell said: