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Take control of the iconic DB BR 112.1 in this Pro Range addition for Train Simulator.

In the wake of the 1973 Oil Crisis, Deutsche Reichsbahn were looking to reinstate their electrification of East Germany. Many of DR’s locomotives were ex-Russian models, that when combined with the cheap fuel offered by them also, made for a hefty fleet of reliable diesels. DR were looking to replace these Russian diesels with modern, electrically-equipped motive power. The trusted LEW Hennigsdorf developed upon the successful DR BR 250 design to make a new electric locomotive a reality. This new model would be more passenger-focused whereas the DR 250 was primarily for freight haulage.

By 1982, the first prototype, numbered 212 001, made its public debut in Leipzig. After a public display, extensive testing was performed and it was initially decided to mass-produce a locomotive which featured a lower than designed top speed, simply because of the limiting infrastructure of the time. This re-geared locomotive would go on to become the DB BR 143.

The reunification of Germany sparked an era of modernisation for the country’s railways. Many routes were being configured for 120+ km/h running, and due to the 143’s restrictive 120 km/h cap, DR and BR were now in need of a new batch of locomotives. They turned to LEW Hennigsdorf’s successor, AEG, to re-introduce the original, 160 km/h capable, 212 001 prototype as a production locomotive. Introduced as the BR 212, this new locomotive was the first to be jointly operated by both Deutsche Reichsbahn and Deutsche Bundesbahn, and as a result quickly became a motive symbol of German reunification.

Being a ‘Universal’ locomotive, construction methods and specific details were on par with previous designs. The main difference to the previous DB BR 155 was the removal of two axles, leaving behind a more passenger-suited Bo-Bo configuration. Despite their rather box-like design, these locomotives’ journeys were kept smooth due to reliable suspension in the chassis.

After the success of the DB BR 112, both DB and DR went onto order 45 improved variations, the DB BR 112.1; these two locos were very similar in external design, perhaps the only obvious difference being the revised headlight cluster on the newer model. The other major difference was inclusion of LZB from the outset. The DB BR 112.1’s were built by LEW Hennigsdorfs’ successor, AEG and after a few teething problems were set to operate InterRegio services.

In recent years, the DB BR 112 fleet has been split in two. The 112.1’s frequently take power at the helm of DB Regio services, while the original 112.0’s were reclassified as the DB BR 114.0, purely owing to their dedication to Berlin-based operations. With all the reclassification, including within the original DB BR 143 fleet, it is considered that there are too many numbers for so few differences.

There is no denying, the Universal locomotives of LEW Hennigsdorf helped shape the railway services that are still seen to this day. Reliable locomotives such as the DB BR 112.1 have served at the helm for many years, and is now available for Train Simulator, courtesy of Partner Programme developer, Virtual Railroads.

The DB BR 112.1 for Train Simulator is fully featured, including everything from battery isolation to manual traction motor blowers. A full cold start sequence is featured, along with the complex Sifa and PZB safety systems and even neutral section EL-signals. A selection of career scenarios is included for the Hamburg-Lübeck Railway plus Quick Drive consists that display various examples of the BR 112.1 fleet.
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