Christmas is always closer than you think it’s going to be, so you know what time it is; Time to beat the rush and start to get set up early!
There’s nothing better than seeing a model train race around the tree on Christmas morning, and what better than an iconic North Pole Express Christmas train set to do it with!
If you’re in the market to upgrade or looking to make the first purchase, take a look at our review below of the different North Pole Express trains that are made by companies like Bachmann, Lionel, and EZ-Tec to find out which one is right for you.
Or, if you’re just looking for any old Christmas train, we have a Christmas train article that goes into a lot more detail as well.
- Showcase your Christmas spirit with The North Pole Central Ready-to-Play Freight set; Create a circle, rectangle or oval with this exclusive track system; Great for kids, hobbyists and holiday decorating
- Battery-powered locomotive and tender; Gondola with crate load; Center-cupola caboose, 24 curved and 8 straight plastic track pieces
- Authentic train sounds and announcements, including bell and whistle; Working headlight; Fixed knuckle couplers, removable crate load in the gondola; User-friendly remote
- 50” x 73” Ready-to-Play track; This set is not compatible with Lionel G Gauge or any other G Gauge track systems
This Lionel North Central train set is the best present a child could wake up to on a Christmas morning! As this is a G scale train, it’s a pretty large-scale replica of a train, so you will need a lot of room to complete the set! But that only means that it’s really going to pack a visual punch on the tracks!
This awesome model train has a full green, white and red livery colour scheme and comes with a locomotive and wood tender, a gondola with some fun looking crates, and a centre-cupola caboose plus it also comes with 24 curved and 8 straight plastic track pieces – enough to make a 50×73″ oval track!
The best part about this train set is that it doesn’t run on electricity so you can place it anywhere and not have to worry about proximity to a power source. The locomotive (the first car) contains 6 “C” batteries and the remote control contains 3 “AAA” batteries. The locomotive lights illuminate in the front and in the rear when it is powered on.
This is the kind of train, especially for the price point, that’s great to put under a tree and can take a beating from the kids or grandkids for a week, but probably would struggle over a whole year.
The only big negative to this train is the sound options are a little limited as well. A horn, whistle, and a music symbol, but no actual music when you push it. Just a conductor that repeats the same phrase – “Next stop, the North Pole!”
- LionChief 2-8-4 steam locomotive with tender, Bluetooth control with included remote or app, DCC control, Conventional transformer control, LED headlight, Realistic sounds activated by remote or app
- Operating knuckle couplers, Boxcar Features: Opening doors, 2-bay Hopper Features: Removable coal load
- 42x60" Oval of MagneLock Track, Remote Control, 1-amp Power supply
The Lionel North Pole Central Express is another great train straight from Lionel, although this one is a pretty big step up from the other one on this list.
The green and red colors fully embrace the warm spirits of Christmas. This is a train set your child will find joy in through the winter and more.
This is a suitable set that even teenagers will have fun putting together. You can even bring the family together so that you can build this train set together. Create more fond memories for everyone to look back on.
You can lower or increase any sounds you find annoying with the remote. A 1 amp power supply will provide the train set with adequate power to keep all the features running. It is built for space and won’t take up much room as it stretches 44 inches. This leaves room for any other expandable component you can add later.
- Light up a dark room with the LED lights built into the train
- There are many ways to control the train including Bluetooth and remote control
- It comes with additional detachable box carts so you can make the train longer
- NEW, North Pole Express Christmas Train Set "G" Gauge
- 22 Pieces / Forward / Stop / Reverse / Operating Headlight
- Plays Christmas Carols
- Locomotive/ Coal Tender/ Caboose/ 12 Curve Track/ 7 Road Sign
- Require 6 C Batteries (not included)
Just like the name suggests, the EZ-TEC North Pole Express is super easy to get up and running! If you want something that is not complicated then this train set is the best choice you could make. It is so easy that even small children can put it together in a matter of minutes.
This train set even plays Christmas carols once you put the whole set together. This music creates an ambiance that suits the tone of Christmas. You can choose from different buying options, so you can get it at a time of your convenience.
The three pieces that make up the train have been painted red to suit the theme. You will also have to fit in six C cell batteries to provide power to the train set. It is a light toy set weighing only nine pounds.
- It has operating headlights to light up the path in front of the train
- It can travel both forward and in reverse
- It comes with a total of 22 pieces including seven stop signs and twelve curved tracks that form an oval
- Complete Ready To Run Passenger Train Set
- Powered by a 2-6-2 Steam Era Locomotive with Operating Headlight, Smoke, and Tender
- Includes; Heavyweight Coach Car, and Heavyweight Observation Car
- 63" x 45" Oval of Snap-Fit E-Z Track, Power Pack and Speed Controller
- HO Scale 1:87
The Bachmann North Pole Express is a real heavyweight train set. This means it is made from high-quality and highly durable materials. This is one of the largest train sets you can fit into an entire room. It even comes with a manual if you find the set a bit complicated to build by yourself.
It is a heavyweight train set so it might be most suitable for teenagers or older. You can also mark a checklist to keep track of the building process. The manual also shows you how to keep all of your parts clean and in good condition.
It keeps the different components attached with magnets. The magnets lock the compartments together and can be removed. The entire train runs on a power supply which you have to attach to the train. You will have to then connect the other cable to a socket to get it started.
- You can choose from three different colors for your track system
- A speed controller helps you to maintain the speed of the train or if you feel like it you can speed it up
- If comes with working electronic parts including smoke, headlights and power system
When it comes to getting a North Pole Christmas train, whether it’s just for a model train layout or if it’s for underneath your Christmas tree, I think that any of the ones above are all really good and you’d be totally fine to grab any of them that you like the look of best.
That said, I’m a really big fan of Bachmanns North Pole Express just because the actual North Pole Express holds a special place in my heart!
Peter has been building model trains for longer than he can remember. An avid fan of HO and O scale this blog is a creative outlet to allow him to dive further into other scales and aspects of the model train community and hobby.