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I'm kind of torn.  I'd like the #1218 in a freight version, NOT the gloss finished excursion version (I didn't like the look of the glossy excursion Big Boy, and I have no intention of buying the excursion passenger cars).  I thought that I had heard that they were going to do a non-excursion version, so I will have to wait and see.


Funny - back in the MTH-Lionel lawsuit days the Lionel N&W Class A was one of the copied-tooling "lawsuit engines" (I have one - TMCC, pre-Odyssey). MTH also offered a Class A, of course - one of the objects of the stolen tooling designs.

This new Lionel Class A, which is all-new tooling, apparently, would then make this the third time that between them,  MTH and Lionel have tooled up for this locomotive. This big locomotive.


I’m seriously considering the Pilot version. I’ve got a Pilot J & Y3, the A will fit right in. 😎 Unfortunately Lionel’s track record with color is not good when it comes to N&W steam, so for a pre-order, a pilot version is Super Safe. 👍🏻 My second choice would probably be the 1210 version. Here again will they get the smoke box color right ???  I’d have to see one before I buy it. Pre-order no way.

N&WGuy, I totally agree with you on the fantasy scheme. Between the incorrect Tuscan color, misalignment of the stripe, and even the wrong font of the numbers 2, I’m staying way away from any pre-order, especially this one.

I saw in the catalog a mention of versions with and without the aftercooler - does anyone know approximately when aftercoolers were installed on the A's (before or in the 50's)?

I'm leaning towards the WW2 version but also eyeing the 1945 version, since the WW2 version has the Y3 tender. I am thinking I'd like to loosely model a 1940s time period. While the Y-3 tender on the A is prototypical, I really like the other tender - to me it feels more fitting for the Class A. I already have Lionel's original 1218 so maybe I will get the WW2 version to cover a broader time period - I'm not in a rush to pick, there's time

I’m disappointed that the “Special Feature” in January 2022 really didn’t have anything to do with the A??? I’m trying to wrap my head around the Base3 as a Special Feature. I do like the ICab app which was $50. Now the Base3 has a better app and costs $450 or so? Will I have to pay for the app also? Aside from 4 digit number assigning and running other Lionel engines that aren’t Legacy, which I don’t have, what am I gaining with the Base3??? The Special feature should have been solely for the A. 😡

As far as rolling stock for N&W to go with the A, what a joke. There are more colorful off the beating trail passenger sets and graffiti cars. Once again N&W suffers. My N&W rolling stock is coming from MTH at a reasonable price. 😎

Last edited by N&W 1218

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