I have a Märklin Z model railroad layout and I have found Ebay a good place to buy locomotives. Märklin has a limited number of models available brand new, and the line changes every year. For different reasons you might want to buy a locomotive that is not available from Märklin this year. This is quite fine because the locomotives last very long (if not mistreated), old models are even available (on Ebay) brand new, and since they are small shipping is trivial and cheap.
However, when I was browsing available items on Ebay I got confused after a while! What was that model I liked? What item number did it have? Are there other item numbers that look the same? That made me put together a simple list and I used my Märklin catalogues from 1996-2016 (I have about half of them) as information source. I have limited myself to steam locomotives and Z scale.
Märklin manufacturing and tooling
When Märklin wants to offer a new model they invest in tooling for it. That obviously cost money. They then use that tooling to produce different versions of that locomotive for a shorter or longer period of time. Typically a standard (black BR/DR/DRG) version made available for several years. Then there are special versions (Insider members only, anniversary editions, or other company versions: Baden, Prussia, Bavaria and so on) available just a year or two. Finally, the tooling is retired, and the model is withdrawn unless new tooling is developed.
My list is based on locomotive types. Look at the DRG 18.1: it has been available as different Märklin items for BR and Bavaria (as S3/6) for most of the time. During a few years, there was also a Wurtenburg edition (88180).
Model numbers prefixed with S are Start sets (coming with transformer, tracks and wagons).
Model numbers prefixed with T are Train sets (coming with matching wagons).
I am confused with this BR/DR/DRG thing! I understand the German national railway company has had different names over the 20th century, but Märklin is not using BR/DR/DRG consistently over the years for the same models, so my list is also a mess. I am thinking about just writing BR or “German Black” everywhere. Feel free to suggest how to deal with this!
I have not had access to every catalogue since 1996, so there are definitely items missing.
Some models have been coming and going over the years. If my list says 1998-2016 it does not mean the model was available every single year. It just means that during the period of time this locomotive model was available as different Märklin items (many of them just a single year). Märklin had some bad years when they went bancrupt, the Z scale was rumoured to be eliminiated, production was moved to China, and eventually it was moved back again. These years very few items were available.
The purpose of the list is not to follow individual item numbers (when they were introduced and discontinued) but rather to show what steam locomotives have been made available as a Märklin Z item, the time it was available, and relevant item numbers.
|Model||Wheels Arrangement||Available||Märklin Items|
|BR 003||4-6-2+8||1994-2012||8885 88851 88852 88854 88855|
|DR 03.10||4-6-2+8||1994-1998||8886 8890 88861|
|BR 10||4-6-2+8||1994-2006||8889 8888 88892 88893|
S 3/6 Bav
|88181 88183 88184 T:81426
8892 88921 88923 S:81781
|DRG 18.4||4-6-2+8||1994-1998 2003||T:8833 T:8108 T:81331|
|BR 24||2-6-0+6||1994-2012||8803 88030 S:81560|
|88090 88092 T:81362
|BR 41||2-8-2+8||1994-2012||8827 88271 88274 S:81780 T:81361|
|BR 42.90||2-10-0+8||2003-2006||88040 88041|
|BR 44||2-10-0+8||2010-2012||88972 88973|
|BR 50||2-10-0+8||1994-2016||8884 8154 88841 88842 88843 S:81863 S:81864|
|BR 52||2-10-0+8||1998-2016||8883 88830 88831 88836|
G 8.1 Prus
G 12 Prus
G 12 Wurt
G 12 Baden
|DRG 64||2-6-2||2016||88740 88741|
T 9 Wurt
|8895 88951 88593 S:8158 S:81562
|BR 78||4-6-4||1994-2012||8806 88062 T:81191|
|T 18 Prus
T 18 Wurt
|BR 85||2-10-2||2002-2006||88885 88886 88887|
|BR 86||2-8-2||1994-2012||8896 88961 T:81001|
|BR 89||0-6-0||1994-2016||8805 88051 S:8150 S:8180 S:81520 S:81521 S:81522 S:88569 T:8138|
T 16.1 Prus
|DRG 96||0-8-8-0||2005-2016||88290 88291 88294|
|Mikado||2-8-2+8||1994-2012||8807 S:81461 S:81466 S:81830 T:88812|
|Pacific||4-6-2+8||1994-2006||8810 T:8881 T:8882 T:88811 S:81530|
|SNCF 130 (BR74)||2-6-0||2016||88956|
Please comment below if you want this list to be corrected!