TGV is an acronym for 'Train a Grand Vitesse' or 'train at great speed', or high-speed trains. The French TGV, at a speed of 186 mph, began service in 1981 from Paris to Lyon. In 1990, under special test conditions, a TGV trainset reached the astonishing speed of 320 mph!

On just a single line of dedicated tracks from Paris to Marseille, the TGV Mediterranee, which began service in 2001, carried 23 million passengers in 2002.

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The French TVG