The Gotthardbahn rail line running from Luzern, Switzerland all the way to Chiasso, Italy is one of Europe’s most important and treacherous railways. Climbing up, down, and around some of the continent’s highest summits, the Re 620 electric locomotive has been built to pull freight through just about any circumstance with its over 10,000 horsepower.
Considered the most modern of the Gotthard locomotives, the Re 620 can climb from zero to 60 miles per hour in 5.8 seconds –only a few fractions behind Jaguar’s new luxury electric coupe. Armed with 88 engines and 10,500 horsepower, the train can pull up to 800 tons throughout varying gradients and inclines. For heavier loads up to 1,300 tons, a smaller four-axle electric engine is placed behind the main engine to boost power.
Built between 1975 and 1980, the Re 620 is a veteran to the Gotthardbahn terrain. The first two prototypes of the train were built uniquely with split body joints that only moved on a horizontal axis instead of vertical. Though the design did help adjust to changes in incline, the following two models were given secondary suspensions that worked just as well and have been used throughout the entire Re series ever since. The historic locomotives are so powerful and efficient, all but one of the 89 total built are still running today.