The WMR ordered No.17 from the Baldwin Locomotive Works. It entered service on 10 June 1902 and was at the time the most powerful locomotive to operate in the country. No.17 was the only 2-8-2 "Mikado" to run in New Zealand. It was a Vauclaincompound, and its trailing truck bore similarities to the Q class, the world's first 4-6-2 "Pacific" type then under construction by Baldwin for NZR.
No.17/BC 463 worked this line its entire life. It operated for nearly two decades in NZR's ownership until it was withdrawn on 31 March 1927 along with fellow surviving WMR locomotives when NZR adopted a rapid locomotive standardisation plan. It did not survive to be preserved. A decade after it was withdrawn, the steepest section of its former line was bypassed by the Tawa Flat deviation and became the Johnsonville Branch.