An EMD GP50 is a 4-axle road switcher diesel-electric locomotive built by General Motors Electro-Motive Division (EMD). It is powered by a 16-cylinder EMD 645F3B diesel engine, which can produce between 3,500 and 3,600 hp (2,610 and 2,685 kW). 278 examples of this locomotive were built by EMD between 1980 and 1985. BN 3110-3162 were all delivered with five cab seats, the final five of these having the cab lengthened 23 in (584 mm) vs. the standard EMD cab. The GP50 retains the same overall length of 59 feet 2 inches (18.03 meters) as the EMD GP38, EMD GP38-2, EMD GP39, EMD GP39-2, EMD GP40 and EMD GP40-2.

A BN train westbound through Eola, Illinois, led by a GP50
Type and origin
Power typeDiesel-electric
BuilderGeneral Motors Electro-Motive Division (EMD)
Build date1980 1985
Total produced278
Gauge4 ft 8 12 in (1,435 mm) standard gauge
Wheel diameter40 in (1,000 mm)
Wheelbase43 ft 9 in (13.34 m)
Length59 ft 2 in (18.03 m)
Width10 ft 4 in (3.15 m)
Height15 ft 7 in (4.75 m)
Loco weight250,000 lb (113,398 kg)
Prime moverEMD 16-645F3B
Engine typeV16 diesel
Performance figures
Maximum speed65 mph (105 km/h)
Power output3,500–3,600 hp (2,610–2,685 kW)
Tractive effort65,000 lb (29,000 kg)

In 2015–2016 the Norfolk Southern Railway rebuilt 28 GP50s into the low-emission GP33ECO.[1] And in early 2016, Norfolk Southern rebuilt one GP50 into their first GP59ECO. These units, most of which utilized GP59 cores, have similar specifications as the earlier GP33ECO program but have been built without public funding contributing to their construction.

Original Owners

Railroad Quantity Road numbers Notes
Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway 45 3810-3854 All now in service with BNSF Railway
Burlington Northern Railroad 63 3100-3162 3100-3109 ordered by St. Louis – San Francisco Railway, but delivered to BN. 3100 only one that received Frisco colors, though with BN number. Most now in service with BNSF Railway
Chicago and North Western Railway 50 5050-5099 To Union Pacific Railroad; since retired.
Missouri Pacific Railroad 30 3500-3529
Southern Railway 90 7003-7092 High hood units; passed to successor NS. All retired or rebuilt to different configurations, 28 being converted to GP33ECO.

Secondhand Owners

Railroad Quantity Road numbers Notes
Toledo Peoria and Western Railroad 4 5008, 5009, 5010, 5015 All units are ex-BN. 5010 is ex-SLSF.
Mississippi Export Railroad 1 68 68 is former CNW.
Massachusetts Coastal Railroad 1 2010 Ex-CNW 5098
Webb Asset Management (WAMX) 10 5001-5002, 5004, 5005, 5007-5008, 5010-5013 All ex-UP nee CNW.


  1. "NS unveils first publicly funded GP33ECO locomotives". Trains. January 6, 2015. Retrieved 12 January 2015. (subscription required)
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