Produced from 1964 to 1966, the SD35, along with its four-axle GP35 sibling, marked both an end and a beginning. They were the last road diesels to use the EMD 567 motor that had powered switchers, F-units, and Geeps since 1939 (so named because each cylinder displaced 567 cubic inches). For the horsepower race of the 1960s, EMD tweaked the 567 to a turbocharged V-16 delivering 2500 hp. That was it for the 567, however, and in 1966 the baton was passed to the more powerful model 645. But while the "35 line" diesels ushered out an old motor, they ushered in a new look. Their angled cab roofs and the clean, squared-off lines of their car bodies established the look of EMD road power for the next three decades.
In an era when 4-axles diesels were the norm, the six-axle SD version was intended for lighter track, because its weight was spread out over more wheels. Those extra wheels were also an advantage in lower-speed service with heavier loads. While a majority of railroads ordered the low-nose version, the Southern and Norfolk & Western ordered SD35s with the high short nose and often ran them long-hood forward for better crew protection.
While our new Premier model is not the first O gauge version of this heavy hauler, it offers the best combination of detail, realism, and performance of any 1/48 scale SD35. Added-on detail parts include windshield wipers, metal see-thru body grilles, lift rings, metal grab irons and handrails, see-thru rooftop fan housings, and truck-mounted brake cylinders and air pipes. Thanks to Proto-Speed Control, this model can dig in and haul heavy loads at low speeds just like the prototype, or highball down the mail line with a fast freight. And in command mode with the DCS system, you can create a lashup combining one or more SD35s with any other Proto-Sound 2.0 locomotives, and run them from a single throttle just like the prototype.