- RP25 wheels
- Silky-smooth & powerful PIKO Mechanism for great low-speeds and precise running
- Period-specific details
- PIKO knuckle couplers
- PIKO TrainSound® Decoder (on DCC/Sound versions)
The idea of replacing two locos with one in mainline service had great appeal. The hydraulic transmissions were an effort to eliminate the complexity and maintenance issues of electrical traction motors and all their related controls.
Three “Prototype” locos were delivered to SP in 1961 and three to D&RGW. These cab locos with their rounded noses and full car bodies looked very different than the slightly larger batch of “Series” hood locos later delivered to the SP. Upon delivery, both roads promptly put their KMs to work in the hardest possible service, with dynamometer cars often following to test every aspect. Performance was impressive, but teething problems quickly developed. German technicians sent over to the SP and D&RGW worked to address issues and train local maintenance crews. Over time, many modifications were made and reliability improved, but in the end, the locos may simply have been victims of a difference of cultures. Technology that was commonplace and successful in European railroads just did not mesh well with American railroad operation and maintenance practices. None of the six “Prototype” locos survived the decade, but they made an indelible mark with many thousands of fans.