Sri Lanka Railways M5

The Sri Lanka Railways Class M5 is a type of diesel-electric locomotive. The class was ordered to strengthen the diesel locomotive fleet of Sri Lanka Railways.

Class M5
Sub-class M5C
Type and origin
Power typeDiesel
BuilderOriginal: Hitachi
Build date1979
Total produced16
RebuilderSri Lanka Railways
Gauge1,676 mm (5 ft 6 in)
Loco weight66 t (65 long tons; 73 short tons)[1]
Fuel typeDiesel fuel
Prime moverOriginal: MTU-Ikegai 12V652TD11
M5A: MTU 396TC13
M5B: Paxman Valenta RP200L
M5C: Caterpillar 3516 DITA [1]
Engine typeAll four V12 Diesel engines
Performance figures
Maximum speed60 mph (97 km/h)[2]
Power outputOriginal: 1,640 hp (1,220 kW),
M5A: 1,150 hp (860 kW),
M5B: 1,150 hp (860 kW),
M5C: (1600hp)[1]
OperatorsSri Lanka Railways
ClassM5, M5A, M5B, M5C
Number in class16
LocaleSri Lanka
DispositionM5B & M5C

The Class M5 became a familiar sight on Main Line of SLR. They performed on Sri Lanka's railroad for few years.



In order to replace steam locomotives and also to increase the diesel locomotive fleet of SLR, 16 diesel-electric locomotives were ordered from Hitachi and were delivered in 1979.


After few years of operation, due to technical problems, M5 class locomotives were taken out of service.[2]


Considering the decline of original Class M5 locomotives, SLR refurbished some selected M5 locomotives as a part of the Transportation Rehabilitation Project.[2] Refurbished locomotives were allocated in to 3 classes namely, M5A, M5B and M5C.

Sub ClassImageDescription
M5AM5 No. 769 was fitted with a new prime mover of model MTU V12 396TC13[1] which was a spare prime mover of a S8 DMU. Condemned due to an electrical failure.
M5B4 locomotives (Nos 768, 772, 777 and 778) were fitted with new Paxman Valenta V12 RP200L prime movers. In Use.
M5CThe M5 locomotives 767, 771, 776, 779, 781, 782 and 775 were fitted with new Caterpillar prime movers. This new locomotive class was called M5C. This class M5Cs known to Sri Lankan railway enthusiasts as "Cat"


Locomotives 773 and 780 were damaged due to accidents. Both are out of service. The last M5C locomotive was released in 2010. This locomotive was fitted with air brakes.[2]

See also

Diesel locomotives of Sri Lanka


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