Prototype: German Federal Railroad (DB) class 218 general-purpose locomotive. Diesel hydraulic locomotive with electric train heating. Version in a pure orange / light gray paint scheme as the “City-Bahn” locomotive on the route Cologne – Gummersbach.
Model: The locomotive has an mfx digital decoder and a sound generator. It also has controlled Softdrive Sine high-efficiency propulsion and a compact design maintenance-free motor. 4 axles powered by means of cardan shafts. Traction tires. The headlights are maintenance-free warm white LEDs, they will work in conventional operation, and can be controlled digitally. The locomotive has separately applied metal grab irons on the sides and ends. It also has detailed buffer beams. Length over the buffers 18.9 cm / 7-7/16".
This model can be found in a DC version in the Trix H0 assortment under item no. 22234. Appropriate “City-Bahn” cars can be found in the Märklin H0 assortment under the item numbers 43808 and 43818.
City-Bahn. Branch lines have always been problem children for the German railroad. In 1984, the German Federal Railroad took a new approach to increase the attractiveness of service on little used routes. The project went under the name “City-Bahn” and initially one route for selected for this service: Cologne – Gummersbach. “Silberlinge” / “Silver Coins” commuter cars were used as rolling stock and were rebuilt to the latest standard at that time. A train café was set up in one of the cars and the exterior of these trains was borrowed from the paint scheme for the S-Bahn in the Rhine/Ruhr area. The paint scheme for the locomotives was adapted to that of the trains in order to achieve a high level of recognition for the “City-Bahn” product. Class 218 diesels were used on the route Cologne – Gummersbach. The railroad was able to register a clear increase in passengers thanks to the “City-Bahn”, and this increase was the result of the dense service at regular intervals. Without a doubt the “City-Bahn” concept kept rail service alive on routes threatened with abandonment until it was replaced by its successor, the “Stadt-Express” or “City-Express”.