Pre-Order | Next Shipment September 2024

HO U50 Locomotive, UP #41

Item No.
Athearn - ATHG41075
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Product $369.99
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  • Beacon (Flash function in DCC only)
  • Classification lights (Function in DCC only)
  • Working Truck lights
  • Number board lights
  • Separate see-through air intake grills
  • MU hoses

Due to the increase of better highways in the 1950’s the trucking industry was beginning to siphon off time sensitive traffic from the railroads. Consequently, in the late 1950’s the Union Pacific began seeking ways to increase the horsepower of their locomotives in order to help improve train speeds without having to add more locomotives to their trains. One method to achieve these goals was to mount two complete prime movers on one chassis. UP asked the 3 major locomotive builders at that time to submit proposals using this concept. In response, General Electric created their 5,000-horsepower U50 model, a design which utilized two 2500-horsepower prime movers. Starting in September 1963, UP purchased a total of 23 U50’s, all of which were retired by the mid-1970’s.

There were few changes made to these units during their time on the UP but one, #41, suffered from a significant fire and had to be repainted. It was the only one to receive UP’s 1970’s era slogan, “We Can Handle It.”


  • Only U50 to receive the “We Can Handle it” slogan
  • “Dependable Transportation” slogan
  • “Dependable Transportation” slogan


  • Illuminated truck lights
  • Illuminated classification lights
  • Illuminated number boards
  • See-through air intakes
  • 4-cube speakers
  • Minimum radius: 18” — Recommended radius: 22”

  • Coupler cut levers
  • MU hoses
  • Trainline hose
  • See-through cab windows
  • Full cab interior
  • Walkway tread
  • Windshield wipers
  • Wire grab irons
  • DCC-ready features Quick Plug™ plug-and-play technology with 21-pin NEM connector
  • Fine-scale Celcon handrails for scale appearance
  • Detailed fuel tank with fuel fillers, fuel gauges, breather pipes, and retention tanks
  • Body-mounted McHenry® operating scale knuckle couplers
  • Genesis driveline with 5-pole skew wound motor, precision machined flywheels, and multi-link drivetrain for trouble free operation
  • All-wheel drive with precision gears for smooth and quiet operation
  • All-wheel electrical pickup provides reliable current flow
  • Wheels with RP25 contours operate on all popular brands of track
  • LED Lighting for trouble free operation
  • Heavy die-cast frame for greater traction and more pulling power
  • Scaled from prototype resources including drawings, field measurements, photographs, and more
  • Accurately-painted and –printed paint schemes
  • Fully-assembled and ready-to-run
  • Packaging securely holds the model for safe storage


  • Onboard DCC decoder with SoundTraxx Tsunami2 sound
  • Four cube speakers for optimal sound quality
  • Sound units operate in both DC and DCC
  • Full DCC functions available when operated in DCC mode
  • Engine, horn, and bell sounds work in DC
  • All functions NMRA compatible in DCC mode
  • Precision slow speed control
  • Program a multiple unit (MU) lash up with lead unit only horn, bell, and lights
  • Many functions can be altered via Configuration Value (CV) changes
  • CV chart included in the box


In 1963, the diesel horsepower race had just reached 2,500 horsepower and the only way to get 5,000 horsepower was by putting two diesel engine and generator sets onto one chassis. Given the wheel slip and traction motor technology at the time, eight traction motors and powered axles were needed to convert the horsepower into pulling power. EMD had already produced the DD35, two cab less GP35s on one chassis. General Electric’s answer was to do the same with two U25Bs, which created the U50.

The U50 was 83 feet 6 inches long and towered over most contemporary locomotives at 15 feet 10 inches tall. They weighed in at 559,620 pounds and produced 139,175 pounds of starting tractive effort. Inside the hood were two FDL-16 diesel engines, each with a generator, full radiator, and dynamic brake setup. The U50 rode on two sets of two-axle AAR-B trucks mounted on a span bolster. The trucks were recycled from the scrapped gas turbines. Up front was a tall, blunt nose cab without a front walkway, which gave the U50 its unique appearance.

Product Specs

Prototype Manufacturer
Reporting Mark
Ready/21-Pin NEM
Sub Brand