Worlds Most Powerful Diesel Locomotives

Worlds Most Powerful Diesel Locomotives

 Worlds Most Powerful Diesel Locomotive
UP’s DDA40x Centennials. 6600hp

The EMD SD90MAC-H is rated at 6000hp and has 200,000 lbs of starting tractive effort. The GE AC6000CW, although having the same 6000hp, has been quoted in some sources as having less starting tractive effort (185,000) than the EMD model. Other sources quote the AC6000CW and the SD90MAC-H being equal in both starting TE and HP. In practical terms, GE is the winner, as there were more AC6000CW units built and still in service. The SD90MAC has a bit of a bad reputation due to initial reliability issues. UP gave up over 40 of their 8500-series units to EMD leaser service (reporting mark EMLX), with all of them going to KCS for a while. KCS has turned them back over to EMD’s leasing arm and there is no word as to what road they will be leased to next. As far as I can tell, the AC6000CW fleet still runs with their original owners, with no word as to how reliable they are.

However, the SD90MAC and AC6000CW are only equipped with a single diesel engine. In 1969, EMD built the dual-engine DDA40X “Centennial” locomotives for the Union Pacific. These locomotives were the largest and heaviest locomotives ever built, with 6600 horsepower. However, they were geared for high-speed freight use and only had 136,000 lbs of starting TE. With exception of the UP 6936 in the UP heritage fleet, all these locos have been scrapped or donated to museums.

Railroads today tend to shy away from high-powered locos, as the loss of one high-power loco in a consist means the loss of a lot of the train’s available power. For example, a railroad can specify that a train have 12000 horsepower available from its locomotives. They can put a pair of 6000hp locomotives on it, three 4000hp locos, or perhaps four 3000 hp units. If one of the 6000hp units fail, the train has lost half its available power. If a 4000hp loco in a three-loco consist fails, the train still has two-thirds power available. See how that works?

UP DDA40X In Action, Cheyenne, WY, 1984

UP 8559 SD90MAC-H

SD90Mac-H2s on the UP Cottonrock


GE’s AC6000CW

Amtrak’s Brand New Genesis Locomotives


 The Penta-Header WDG 4 at Dudhsagar!

Brand New South African EMD Class 39-200 GT26CU-3 Diesel Locomotives

egyptian railways ( ENR ) new locomotives EMD JT42CWRM class 66s 8 / 2009 سكك حديد مصر

视频: 环铁HXN3实验1

WH003 assisted by triple TT class on coal train entering Kooragang Island – Hunter Valley Trains

Melbourne to Perth SCT Freight Train in Country Victoria – Australian Railways

Coal train carefully negotiates a broken rail near Maitland – Pacific National Australia Trains.

Russian diesel locomotive 2TE116-795

LUDMILLAs in action! Russian Diesel Locomotive Power & Great Diesel Sound! BR232 5D49 BR 232 RN232


The Russian railway wide gauge (1520mm) Diesel Locomotive 2TЭ10M-4971 haul the long freight train

3TE 10U – smoking

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About dummidumbwit

"I live in a trailer at the edge of town!" Neil Young=Revolution Blues
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2 Responses to Worlds Most Powerful Diesel Locomotives

  1. Andy says:

    The biggest and heaviest locomotive ever built was the C&O allegheny steam (H-8) locomotive, an articulated duplex. 125 feet long and 775,330 pounds. The DDx is king of diesel, but the all time champ will be the H-8 allegheny.

  2. neil says:

    NO WAY! The PRRQ2 duplex is more powerful and is truly the king of steam. It develops almost a hefty 8000 horsepower!!!!!

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