The CFR Class 40/41/42 is a class of electric locomotives built for the Romanian Railways (CFR) for use on the Romanian electrified network. Over 1000 Class 40s were constructed by Electroputere (EP) under ASEA license in EPs Craiova Works from 1967 to 1991. Entering service in 1965, the Class 40 also operated on private railroads after the repeal of CFRs monopoly on rail transport. The vast majority of all the engines are still in service, as of 2013.
Following the plans of Communist Party, the Romanian railway network was to reduce its operating steam engines to under 25% of the total number of engines. Since the start of dieselisation in Romania and the electrification of the first railway sector between Bucharest and Brașov, communist ambitions were to improve local industrial capacities, remove dependency on outside sources and reduce conventional fuel consumption. Since Romania did not develop an electrical locomotive to suit these ambitions, foreign partnerships were searched to design and home build a working horse for the Romanian Railways. Even if Romania has previously signed partnerships with Sulzer for the development of its diesel-electric locomotives, for the electric locomotive a partnership was signed with Sweden's Allmänna Svenska Elektriska (ASEA).
Once the success of the Ra engine series made by ASEA and NOHAB for SJ was proven, electronical advances in the 1960s have given the opportunity for the development of a new series of electric locomotives, the Rb series, that could be exported. The result was an agreement between ASEA, NOHAB and SJ where six test engines were delivered. The testing of the Rb1 was successful and based on this exports were made to the Yugoslav Railways (JŽ class 441) and Romanian Railways (CFR Class 40). The first 10 engines to run on the Romanian railway system were built by ASEA and NOHAB in Sweden and soon after, in 1966 Romania bought a manufacturing licence for these locomotives to be built in Craiova, at Electroputere. Production in Craiova started in 1967.
All the engines built in Romania after 1966 have been identified by the EA designation. These are all 6 axle, 5100 kW engines, produced in a number of over 1000 units between 1967 and 1991. Electroputere (EP) manufactured both the mechanics and electronics of the engines, after mechanics for the engines stopped to be manufactured in Reșița, EP took care of the entire manufacturing for these engines and had a yearly output of 150 engines per year.
The only Class 42 ever built at Gara de Nord. It holds the speed record in Romania (227 km/h in 1998, on Floresti Prahova - Buda line). Until soon it was capable of speeds up to 200 Km/H, but because one of the bearings is worn out, it can only achieve speeds of ~160 Km/H