Mecha Profile: Shinkalion E5 Hayabusa – Shinkalion the Animation

Shinkansen Henkei Robo Shinkalion started out as a toyline wayback in 2015. And Takara being Takara, “toy first, anime later” isn’t a far-fetched concept for them. And in 2019, an anime series titled “Shinkalion the Animation” aired and became a phenomenal hit in Japan with young audience due to its great production quality and a very well-written cast, especially the main character. As the title implies, the show is full of transforming Shinkansens – which is one of the most prominent components in Takara’s work, especially the Braves. You have the Might Gaine series, the Raker brothers, Liner Gao, and more.

The main character of Shinkalion, Hayato Hayasugi, drives the first and poster Shinkalion of the franchise: the Shinkalion E5 Hayabusa – based on the real life bullet train of the same name. It is the first Shinkalion to appear and by far one of the most developed and featured units in the series. One can compare it to the “base” form of a Brave – like Exkaiser or Deckerd. A simple, elegant design yet full of potential.

I. Development History:
– The Shinkalion was first conceptualized at the Ultra Evolution Institute by Dr. Iza, Izumi and Hokuto Hayasugi (Haruto’s son). 10 years before the anime, strange giant monsters appear and attack humanity, which prompts the development of a combat robot capable of repelling them. And the product of that project is the Shinkalion – a transforming robot based on Shinkansen bullet train. Furthermore, the development team consist of people from many unique backgrounds.

– Two years after development, the testing phase began, however, there was an accident during the test run of the Shinkalion prototype, which resulted in many casualties, including head developer Iza and Chikuma Kiyosu. Fortunately, the remaining staff and engineers at the Ultra Evolution Institute were able to complete the Shinkalions, including the E5, E6 and E7 for deployment.

– At first, the E6 and E7 were able to fight with adult drivers, but their abilities are severely limited due to low compatibility rating. And the E5 is a special unit that wouldn’t even move for drivers without high compatible ratings. It was not until a Shinkansen fanboi – Hayato Hayasugi – accidentally stumble upon the Institute’s Command Center and was made to drive the E5 that it managed to move. Hayato proved to be an absolute fit with the unit with absurdly high compatible rating.

II. Technical Specs & Armaments:

– The anime version of the E5 Hayabusa is 26.5-metre tall and weigh 100 ton (which is quite a lot). The E5 Robot Mode consists of 2 carriages: one form the upper half and the other the lower half.

– To drive the E5, one must not only have high compatible rating, but also good aptitude with Shashot – an AI Robot that act as an interface between the driver and the Shinkalion. Only the E5 has this unique feature, hence it is a “special” unit.

– For the Shinkalion to transform, a certain speed must be reached – called the “Ultra Evolution speed” – which is about 1225 km/h. To activate the transformation, the driver must pull a lever located above the Shinca Gear.

– Shinkalions are able to mimic the movements of their Drivers, just like a mobile trace system. the E5 take it a step further with Shashot. If the driver and Shashot’s images are interlocked, the efficiency of the move is amplified. However, if the driver and Shashot are misaligned, the mech will power down.

– The E5 is armed with a Turnstile Sword (Kaisatsu Sword), modelled after the ticket barrier at train station. Its sole ranged weapon is the Gran Cross beam cannon located in the chest, but one shot of the weapon consumes a massive amount of energy, so it’s usually used as the finishing move.

– The Kaisatsu Sword is able to conjure up a virtual blockade around targets that look like a ticket checker at train station. That holds whatever inside stationery for an easy Turnstile Sword finisher.

III. Variation:
The E5 doesn’t have many variation. There is only one variance built for cold climate, which is the H5 Hayabusa. In the anime, it is piloted by an alternate version of the famous vocaloid Hatsune Miku. However, the E5 has the highest number of Link Gattais and Cross-Gattais with other Shinkalions, including the E6, E7, 800, 500 Kodama, and Dr. Yellow.
Shinkalion H5 Hayabusa
Shinkalion E5 + E7
Shinkalion E5 + E6
Shinkalion E5 + Type-800
Shinkalion E5 + Type-500 Kodama
Shinkalion E5 Cross Dr. Yellow

IV. Trivia:
– The exterior design of the E5 is broadly based on the experimental Fastech 360S train, with a color scheme of Tokiwa green for the upper body and Hiun white for the lower body, separated by a Hayate pink stripe.

– The E5 in the anime was incapable of flight on its own. However, in the web series premiered in 2015 to advertise the toys, the E5 was capable of unassisted flight. Even the anime form lost the back wing from the original design as well.

– Later on in the series, the E5 was modified to be pilotable without Shashot, as Genbu was able to pilot the unit as well.

V. Gallery: