Amid the height of the Great Depression, the Pennsylvania Railroad continued an ambitious modernization process of its mainlines between New York, Philadelphia and Washington D.C. The investment kept employees working during the lean years and would pay dividends as World War II brought record-setting traffic levels to what was already the world's busiest rail corridor.
As part of these improvements, the Standard Railroad of the World needed a new locomotive for mainline operations. True to its engineering pedigree, the Pennsylvania began vigorous testing of two potential designs in 1934. When the victor was chosen, Raymond Loewy was given the task to refine the new power house into a modern beauty.
Loewy's vision – a locomotive which appeared to be already at speed as the passengers walked beside it on the station platform – provided not only a fitting shroud but a unique form as striking and iconic today as it was on its debut.
While the public marveled at their looks, railroaders quickly came to respect these new motors for what lay under the hood.
Designed to propel heavy passenger trains at sustained 100 mph jaunts, the GG1's were quickly proven capable of much more.
A total of 139 locomotives were completed by 1943. Used in both passenger and freight service throughout their careers, GG1's could be found on everything from the Broadway Limited to ore trains.
The legendary status of the GG1 grew stronger with age. Outliving the PRR itself, the G's went on to serve Penn Central, Amtrak, Conrail and New Jersey Transit. They finally lost their grip on the catenary in 1985. Today 16 of the memorable motors have been preserved in museums, some far from the corridors they once owned.
- LEGACY™ Control System equipped – able to run in LEGACY™ Control Mode, in TrainMaster Command Control mode, or in Conventional mode with a standard transformer
- Odyssey®II Speed Control
- LEGACY RailSounds® system featuring:
- Stereo and localized sounds with speakers at each end of the locomotive
- Cab number – specific CrewTalk dialog and TowerCom announcements, each with different scenarios depending on whether the locomotive is in motion or stopped.
- Six official railroad speeds with CrewTalk dialog
- Realistic electric locomotive motor and background sounds synchronized with the locomotive's speed
- LEGACY™ "Real-Time Quilling Horn" control with instant response for realistic "quilling" and correctly timed warning signals
- Sequence Control plays the sound effects of an entire trip, including warning sounds and announcements, based on the movement and speed of the locomotive
- Current speed dialog
- Dual sprung pantographs
- Operate automatically with train start-up, change in direction and shut down
- "De-icing" mode with both pantographs raised
- Can be manually triggered with remote
- Individual on-off switches on locomotive to lock out feature
- Sprung for better tracking under model catenary
- "Catenary arc" lighting effect
- IR Sensor Equipped
- Fan-driven smoke unit (steam generator)
- Dual powerful maintenance-free motors
- ElectroCouplers™ at each end
- Directional lighting
- Illuminated classification lights
- Traction tires
- Interior cab illumination
- Die-cast metal body, pilots and trucks
- High level of separately applied detail parts
- Separately applied etched builders plates
- High air intake screens where appropriate
- Cab window "glass"
- Engineer and Fireman figures in cab
- Rail Line: Pennsylvania
- Road Number: 4899
- Gauge: O Gauge
- Scale Type: Scale
- Engine Type: Diesel
- Min Curve: O72
- Dimensions: 20" long
- Most Recent Catalog: 2016 Lionel Signature Edition