This is the Mother of All Electric Locomotives... This machine is very familiar to the fans of the good and old Companhia Paulista de Estradas de Ferro: it is almost identical to the famous V8 locomotive. These locomotives were also present in the E.F. Central do Brasil, where they were nicknamed as Escandalosas. In 1937 the New York, New Haven & Hartford Railroad received six of such locomotives from General Electric, numbered from #361 to 366. The photo shows a EP-4 class passenger locomotive; there was also a specific model for freight service, the EF-3a class. Five units of this version were also supplied to the same railroad. However, their electric specifications were quite different from those used in the V8 Companhia Paulista machines: this kind of locomotive could use 11,000 volt single phase A.C. overhead or 600 volt D.C. from third rail. The last option was used in the tunnels below New York City. The freight version only worked using the 11,000 volt A.C. catenary, as they did not must to go to the New York passenger railroad stations. These locomotives had an A-C commutator motor and power of 4,000 HP at continuous rating. The design of this locomotive certainly was used as basis for the V8 locomotives of the Companhia Paulista. However, the life of these magnific locomotives was not so lengthful as of their Brazilian sisters: apparently all of them were scrapped in the late fifties... The original photo is available in the Locomotive Cyclopaedia, 1956 edition.

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© Antonio Augusto Gorni