|Locale||Tokyo, Saitama, Tochigi, Ibaraki|
|Opened||28 July 1883|
|Line length||163.5 km (101.6 mi)|
|Number of tracks||Double-track|
|Track gauge||1,067 mm (3 ft 6 in)|
|Electrification||1,500 V DC (overhead catenary)|
|Operating speed||120 km/h (75 mph)|
|Train protection system||ATS-P|
The Utsunomiya Line (Japanese: 宇都宮線, romanized: Utsunomiya-sen) is the name given to a 163.5-kilometer (101.6 mi) section of the Tōhoku Main Line between Tokyo Station in Tokyo and Kuroiso Station in Nasushiobara, Tochigi, Japan. It is part of the East Japan Railway Company (JR East) network.
Services on the Utsunomiya Line are typically divided into three categories: services to or from Ueno, Shōnan–Shinjuku Line services, and Ueno–Tokyo Line services. Between Ueno and Ōmiya, trains share the track with the Takasaki Line, both of which serve as de facto express services compared to the parallel Keihin–Tōhoku Line. Northbound services mostly terminate at Utsunomiya or Koganei, with some at Koga. Southbound trains mostly travel through the Shōnan–Shinjuku Line to Zushi on the Yokosuka Line, or the Ueno–Tokyo Line to Atami on the Tōkaidō Line, with a few trains terminating at Ueno.
The fastest service on the line, the rapid Rabbit, makes the run between Ueno and Utsunomiya in 1 hour and 26 minutes.
Service on the line is generally divided at Utsunomiya, though the number of through trains had been increasing steadily over the years. South of Utsunomiya, 10- and 15-car E231-1000/E233-3000 series four-door suburban commuter EMUs with Green cars attached service the line, while to the north service was provided chiefly by 4-car 205-600 series four-door EMUs. Starting 12 March 2022, all services north of Utsunomiya until Kuroiso use E131-600/-680 series EMUs, and through services using suburban 10/15-car trains ceased to operate.
Limited express services use the line, including:
Since March 2015, Rapid Rabbit services now run from Kōzu on the Tōkaidō Line, through the Ueno–Tokyo Line, to Utsunomiya. This service stops at every station on the Tōkaidō Line, and skips some stations on the Utsunomiya Line. Rabbit trains were first operated by the Japanese National Railways as an hourly/half-hourly rapid service. From October 2004, Rabbit services ran only twice during the morning; on weekends, they replaced the weekday commuter rapid service. From March 2021, the commuter rapid service was consolidated into the rapid Rabbit service, which now operate two trains one-way from the Tōkaidō Line (one from Odawara and one from Kōzu) to Utsunomiya in the morning, and between three and five trains each way between Ueno and Utsunomiya in the evening.
Local trains run four times hourly; one of those terminates at Koganei, while the rest terminate at Utsunomiya. During the morning peak, Tokyo-bound trains run at intervals of 4–6 minutes. Services are provided by E231/E233 series 10- or 15-car EMUs. Most trains continue south to the Tōkaidō Line through the Ueno–Tokyo Line, while some trains terminate at Ueno.
See also: Shōnan–Shinjuku Line
Within the Utsunomiya Line, Shōnan–Shinjuku Line rapid and local trains are each operated once per hour. They do not stop at Saitama-Shintoshin Station since it has no platforms available. They operate between Zushi on the Yokosuka Line and Utsunomiya.
Rapid trains operate once hourly, making limited stops. The travel time between Shinjuku and Utsunomiya is about 1 hour and 35 minutes.
Local trains operate once hourly (twice hourly during the morning), stopping at all stations. The travel time between Shinjuku and Ōmiya is about 32 minutes.
Between Utsunomiya and Kuroiso, local trains stop at every station. Trains operate approximately two times per hour, traveling between Utsunomiya and Kuroiso in approximately 50 minutes. All trains use E131-600/-680 series EMUs.
Commuter rapid services for Utsunomiya made fewer stops than the Rabbit rapid services. They were operated only on weekday evenings, between Ueno and Utsunomiya. Trains departed Ueno between 18:00 and 22:00, and Utsunomiya between 16:00 and 21:00, with approximately one round-trip per hour. All trains were E231/E233 series 10- or 15-car EMUs. This service ended on 12 March 2021.
See also: Tōkaidō Main Line
From March 2015, with the Ueno–Tokyo Line opening, Tōkaidō Line Rapid Acty services ran up along the Utsunomiya Line. Services stopped at every station on the Utsunomiya Line, and skipped some stations on the Tōkaidō Line. Since 13 March 2021, Acty services stopped running through to the Utsunomiya Line.
Two trains bound for Koga depart Ueno every weekday evening. Passengers can board only at Ueno; all other stations are for disembarking only. Stops include: Ueno, Urawa, Ōmiya, Higashi-Ōmiya, Hasuda, Kuki, and Koga. Service is provided by 7-car 185 series and 9-car 489 series EMUs.
|Station||Japanese||Distance (km)||Local||Rapid Rabbit||Shōnan–Shinjuku Line||Transfers||Location|
|via Oku||via Ōji||Local||Rapid|
|Through services from/to:||Ueno–Tokyo Line
for Tōkaidō Line and Itō Line
(for Yokosuka Line)
||浦和||11.0||24.4||24.2||●||●||▼||▼||Keihin–Tōhoku Line||Urawa-ku, Saitama||Saitama|
||さいたま新都心||4.5||28.9||28.7||●||｜||｜||｜||Keihin–Tōhoku Line||Ōmiya-ku, Saitama|
|End of suburban section|
|Kuki||久喜||3.0||49.1||48.9||●||●||●||●||Tōbu Isesaki Line||Kuki|
|Kurihashi||栗橋||5.6||57.4||57.2||●||｜||●||｜||Tōbu Nikkō Line|
|Nogi||野木||4.7||69.6||69.4||●||｜||●||｜||Nogi, Shimotsuga District||Tochigi|
|Jichi Medical University||自治医大||2.6||90.9||90.7||●||●||●||●|
|Utsunomiya Freight Terminal||宇都宮貨物ターミナル||1.2||96.8||96.6||｜||｜||｜||｜||Kaminokawa, Kawachi District|
|Hōshakuji||宝積寺||5.5||121.4||121.2||●||■ Karasuyama Line[* 1]||Takanezawa, Shioya District|
|Kuroiso||黒磯||5.5||163.5||163.3||●||■ Tōhoku Main Line (for Shirakawa and Kōriyama)|
From March 2013, a fleet of eight refurbished 4-car 205-600 series EMUs was phased in on Utsunomiya Line services between Utsunomiya and Kuroiso, replacing 211 series sets. These operated until 11 March 2022 when they were replaced by new build 3-car E131-600/-680 series EMUs.
Main article: Tōhoku Main Line