A Trem Húngaro of the R.F.F.S.A. /E.F. Central do Brasil with a Japanese stainless steel commuter train of the C.B.T.U. (the Brazilian Company of Urban Transportation) by its right side, at the Luz station, in São Paulo SP, December 1992.

In 1973 the Brazilian Railroad Network (R.F.F.S.A.) decided to replace the good and old Budd's Rail Diesel Cars that were used in the daily service between São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro and the German-built Minuano unit trains used in the Viação Férrea do Rio Grande do Sul. So R.F.F.S.A. purchased several diesel-hydraulic passanger unit trains from GANZ-MAVAG, from Budapest, Hungary for this objective. Such trains were nicknamed as Trens Húngaros (the Hungarian trains). The units used to replace the Budd's RDC's had wide gauge (1.60 m), while the húngaros destined to replace the Minuanos had metric gauge. These new trains begin to run between São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro in early 1974, but had a very poor performance, as they were not adequate for the Brazilian railroad conditions: Brazilian diesel fuel was excessively heavy; its truck structure was not flexible enough to the bad track conditions; the motors heated excessively many times... In 1976 they were transfered to the E.F. Santos a Jundiaí, where they were used in the section São Paulo-Campinas-Rio Claro, replacing the English electric unit-trains called Cometa. This line is more plain than the line São Paulo-Rio de Janeiro. However, their performance was not completely satisfactory there, so they were transfered to the Baixada Santista lines of the E.F. Santos a Jundiaí, where they were used for transportation of the employees of the Companhia Siderúrgica Paulista (COSIPA) steelworks. I used this train some few times... They were very comfortable and had a fair success doing this job, as the line between Santos and the steelworks, at the Piaçagüera station, is completely plain and very short, only about 25 kilometers. They were used by COSIPA during 14 years, between 1978 and 1992, being deactivated due to the lack of interest of R.F.F.S.A. to continue providing this passenger service. This photo, shot by Ulisses Scrima, was originally published in the Centro-Oeste, an extinct Brazilian magazine about railroad preservation. The copy of this photo was kindly supplied by Marcello Talamo, from São Paulo SP, through the E.F. Brasil, a list for discussion about the Brazilian railroads.

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© Antonio Augusto Gorni