Southern Pacific SD9E units No. 4370 and No. 4423 at Medford, Oregon in July of 1986.

(Roger Puta, courtesy Marty Bernard from U.S.A., Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons)



The EMD SD9E was a rebuild from EMD SD9 diesel locomotives that were built by General-Motors Electro-Motive Division for the Southern Pacific Transportation Company.



The Southern Pacific Transportation Company began ordering 150 EMD SD9 units from General-Motors Electro-Motive Division where they originally classified their units as DF-120, DF-121, DF-122, DF-123, DF-124 and DF-125, with the first 105 units being numbered as 5340–5444, and the other 45 units being numbered as 5449–5493. The Southern Pacific Railroad had 53 of their units Nos. 5340–5391 fitted with the Vapor-Clarkson Steam Boiler OK4625 type steam generator upon when those 53 units were ordered from General-Motors Electro-Motive Division.

Then, in 1965, Southern Pacific Railroad had reclassified their units as EF618-1, EF618-2, EF618-3, EF618-4 and EF618-5, as well as renumbering them as 3800-3966. Then, between August 1970 and March 1980, the Southern Pacific Transportation Company had rebuilt 144 of their units under the General Rehabilitation and Improvement Program (G.R.I.P) and renumbered 142 of their rebuilt units as 4300-4441 and two additional rebuilt units being renumbered as 4450 and 4451, as well as reclassifying their 142 units as EF618E-1 and classified their two units No. 4450 and No. 4451 as EF618E-2, which left six other SD9 locomotives that were not rebuilt.


Southern Pacific EMD SD9E 4393, April, 1978, location and photographer unknown.

(Craig Garver, Public domain,




  • Southern Pacific SD9E No. 4451 is currently stored in derelict condition at Schellville, California where its future remains undetermined.


Currently preserved

  • Southern Pacific SD9E locomotive No. 4364 (Now restored as No. 5399) is operational at the Albany and Eastern Railroad (AERC).
  • Southern Pacific SD9E No. 4404 is preserved at Western Rail Inc. (WRIX).
  • Southern Pacific SD9E locomotive #4426 is currently operational at the Nevada Northern Railway Museum as Nevada Northern No. 204.
  • Southern Pacific SD9E locomotive No. 4427 is currently being used in revenue freight service on the Dakota Southern Railway.
  • Southern Pacific SD9E locomotive No. 4423 (Now restored as No. 5472) is operational at the Niles Canyon Railway.
  • The Portland and Western Railroad (PNWR) uses two SD9E units for switching and industry service. PNWR 1852 (ex- SP 4397) operates out of their Albany, OR Burlington Northern yard and PNWR 1854 (ex-SP 4433) is assigned to the rock train. Both locomotives are scheduled to be scrapped or rebuilt by the PNWR's parent company Genesee and Wyoming as part of a fine resolution agreement with the EPA.


Formerly preserved, scrapped

  • Southern Pacific SD9E No. 4414 was used on the Port of Tillamook Bay Railroad (POTB) until being scrapped in October of 2010 after POTB had went defunct.
  • Southern Pacific SD9E No. 4450 "Huff" was used on the Golden Gate Railroad Museum before being donated to Western Pacific Railroad Museum alongside Southern Pacific SD9E No. 4404 until being scrapped in August of 2013 due to its poor condition and lack of alignment control couplers.



Type and origin
Power type: Diesel-electric
Builder: General Motors Electro-Motive Division (EMD)
Model: SD9, SD9E
Build date: March 1954 – May 1956
Total produced: 144
Rebuild: date August 1970 – March 1980
​• AAR C-C
Gauge: 4 ft 8+1⁄2 in (1,435 mm) standard gauge
Wheel diameter: 40 in (1,016 mm)
Wheelbase: 48 ft 7 in (14.8 m)
Length: 60 ft 8.5 in (18.5 m)
Fuel capacity: 1,200 or 2,400 US gal (4,500 or 9,100 L; 1,000 or 2,000 imp gal)
Lubricant capacity: 200 US gal (757 L)
Sandbox capacity: 50 cu ft (1.4 m3)
Prime mover: EMD 567C
Engine type: V16 diesel
Boiler: Vapor-Clarkson Steam Boiler OK4625
Cylinders: 16
Performance figures
Power output: 1,750 hp (1.30 MW)
Disposition: Twelve units preserved, one stored, two units formerly preserved, remainder scrapped