The Locomotive of Choice
Written By: Gary Dolzall
More than 450 GP40-2s served CSX and now the landmark EMD diesel is available for Train Sim World!
Electro-Motive’s 3,000-horsepower GP40-2 was one of many success stories in EMD’s long lineage of famed “Geep” diesel road-switchers, and now the GP40-2, in classic CSX “YN2” livery, is available for Train Sim World and CSX Heavy Haul duty!
In February 1973, the Chessie System was formed, cementing a relationship between eastern railroad heavyweight Chesapeake & Ohio, its historic sibling Baltimore & Ohio, and the 1,100-mile Western Maryland. Among the first orders of business for the Chessie System was motive power renewal, as all three roads owned expansive fleets of first-generation motive power that was ready for replacement. Together, C&O, B&O, and WM owned 226 of EMD’s versatile GP40s, and with that locomotive being upgraded to “Dash 2” status with the GP40-2 of 1972, it was hardly a surprise that Chessie System would select the GP40-2 for additional purchases. And indeed, Chessie System did so with vigor, making the new Geep a locomotive of choice. Between 1973 and 1980, Chessie acquiring a fleet of 348 GP40-2s, all dressed in the system’s vivid and very memorable yellow, blue, and vermillion ‘Chessie the Cat” livery.
Chessie System, along with Seaboard System, was, of course, the foundation stone of today’s giant CSX (formed in 1986), and Seaboard System brought to CSX another 51 GP40-2s from predecessors including Seaboard Coast Line and Louisville & Nashville. But CSX’s GP40-2 roster was destined to grow even further, in 1991 when CSX acquired the Richmond, Fredericksburg & Potomac and its seven GP40-2s, and in 1999, when CSX’s acquisition of a portion of Conrail included an additional 53 locomotives. All told, more than 450 GP40-2s would come to call CSX home.
On CSX, the versatile GP40-2 handled virtually any duty it was given, from top-priority intermodals to unit trains and mixed manifests, and, particularly later in life, for local and even switching duties. In March 1990 CSX rolled out a stylish new scheme the railroad coined its “Bright Future” livery (and which railfans now often refer to as the “YN2” livery) and hundreds of the GP40-2s received the attractive livery (which some wear to this day). Indeed, CSX continues to employ an expansive fleet of veteran GP40-2s in road, local, and switching duties across its 21,000-mile system. CSX has, in fact, extended the already remarkable tenures of many of its units through a “GP40-3” upgrade and rebuilding program.
Now, the successful and venerable Electro-Motive GP40-2 – in CSX “Bight Future” (“YN2”) livery – comes to Train Sim World and CSX Heavy Haul, ready for service on famed Sand Patch. Created in exacting detail and with realistic operating characteristics and fidelity, the Train Sim World Electro-Motive GP40-2 joins the CSX SD40-2, GP38-2, and GE AC4400CW as authentic motive power to move tonnage up and over the Sand Patch Grade route. Also included in the GP40-2 DLC are new contemporary freight cars ideal for manifest service on Sand Patch Grade – a 73-foot center-beam flatcar and a CSX 42-foot steel coil car. And the GP40-2 is fully integrated into CSX Heavy Haul’s “Services” mode.
Now’s the time to climb aboard and take the throttle of the magnificent CSX Electro-Motive GP40-2 diesel road-switcher on Sand Patch Grade! – Gary Dolzall ■
Now available for Train Sim World and CSX Heavy Haul is the successful and venerable Electro-Motive GP40-2 in classic CSX “Bright Future (“YN2”) livery. Electro-Motive produced 1,143 GP40-2s, more than 450 of which eventually served CSX. Screenshots by Gary Dolzall. Famed Sand Patch Grade is snow covered as CSX GP40-2 6132 leads an EMD SD40-2 climbing the west slope of the Alleghenies near Garrett, Pennsylvania (above). Further west, at Rockwood amid a summer dusk downpour (below), no doubt the engineer of the two EMDs on the head of a westbound freight is busy with the dynamic brakes. CSX’s truss bridge over Willis Creek at Hyndman, Pennsylvania frames a pair of GP40-2s as the duo makes the climb of Sand Patch’s east slope (above), then a short time later, near Brackens, the “YN2” liveried Geeps encounter a train of CSX coal gons (below). Along the bucolic Salisbury branch on an autumn evening, CSX GP40-2 6170 is leading a string of coal gons toward Shaw Tipple for loading (above), while on a pleasant summer afternoon another pair of veteran CSX GP40-2s are crossing the branch’s bridge over the Casselman River at Meyersdale, Pennsylvania (below). On Train Sim World’s CSX Heavy Haul Sand Patch Grade route, the task of battling the Alleghenies and heavy tonnage is challenging and unrelenting. With eastbound auto racks in tow, GP40 6112 rolls below the massive ex-Western Maryland Salisbury Viaduct (above), then later, on the east slope of the CSX Keystone Subdivision, the train emerges from Falls Creek Tunnel and crosses Willis Creek near Fairhope, Pennsylvania (below). The 3,000-horsepower, four-axle (B-B) GP40-2 was constructed by Electro-Motive from 1972 to 1986 and was equipped with EMD’s long-standard “spartan cab” design and traditional second-generation engineer’s control stand. Accompanying the CSX EMD GP40-2 in the new DLC pack now available for Train Sim World and CSX Heavy Haul are two new and authentic freight cars ideal for service on Sand Patch Grade, a 42-foot CSX steel coil car and 73-foot center-beam flatcar. Now you can climb into the cab and take the throttle of the versatile and successful CSX GP40-2 and experience the drama of Sand Patch Grade in Train Sim World and CSX Heavy Haul!