The EMD F7 – An American Railway Icon

The EMD F7 is the most successful model of the F series of General Motors. It is also one of the greatest locomotives to ever run on the American railway. This legendary train may not have had the best high-tech engine of that time, but it still managed to win the hearts of many American railway corporations.

The history of the EMD F7

The EMD F7 is the fourth addition in the EMD F locomotive series. Even though there were four more F series locomotive models produced afterward, the F7 remained the most successful and popular F locomotive.
The first F series locomotive was built in 1938, the EMD FT. As it was successful, many other models were introduced, and the fourth edition is the F7. The first F7 was introduced in 1949.

The F7 has a slick-looking design. The engine maintenance of this model requires very low effort. Almost all railway corporations in the USA have brought EMD F7 locomotives for their use.

General Motors have ceased production of the EMD F7 locomotives in 1953. It’s been more than 50 years, but we can still see some EMD F7 running in short routes in America.

Some are upgraded to fit with the minimum locomotive requirements of dern day railroads.

What is in the EMD F7?

Under the hood of the EMD F7, we have a two-stroke v16 engine. The 16 cylinders together can provide 1500 horsepower for the locomotive.

It can easily tow/ pull an enormous number of carriages behind it. The issue with the engine is that it can only cloak 65 mph as its maximum speed. That’s lower than the top speed of a steam engine.

Make no mistake, the EMD F7 is not weaker than steam engines. It has more capacity.

This issue of top speed was solved by adding a B unit with the locomotive. This B unit generates additional horsepower and the EMD F7 can cloak 102 mph.

While this B unit solved the issue of power and speed, it made problems for fuel-efficiency. That is what lead to the downfall of EMD F7 and it was withdrawn from the main railway.

What is the current status of EMD F7?

EMD F7 was prepared for scraping, but some of them managed to escape. A few got assigned to short route tasks. And some of them got upgraded and rebuild to compete with other modern locomotives.

What Engine is in an EMD F7?

The EMD F7 has a 16-cylinder V-shaped two-stroke diesel engine. This engine could produce 1500 horsepower and reach a top speed of 65 mph.

How long is an EMD F7?

The EMD F7 locomotive is 15.49 meters long.

How many EMD F7 are there?

There are 2383 units of EMD F7 ever produced and used. Some of them managed to cape the scrapping process and running in some short route railways.

How much Horsepower does an EMD F7 have?

The engine of the EMD F7 can produce 1500 horsepower.

What does an EMD F7 weigh?

The EMD F7 weighs 1236.5 tons.

How much does EMD F7 cost?

The estimated cost of the EMD F7 will be around $1.6 million. But the price can differ because EMD does not manufacture EMD F7 anymore.

Are there other versions of EMD F7?

There is another version of the EMD F7 manufactured by General Motors. The EMD FP7.
But if you think about it, all the EMD F units are different versions of the EMD F7.


So that was the EMD F7, America’s most popular diesel power locomotive. You can still see some of these locomotives operational in different regions. If not, then you can surely see them in some Hollywood movies.

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