JŽ Class 362 and 462

Elsewhere on this site (in the articles on the JŽ class 361 and 342 electrics) I have covered the political developments of the first half of the 20th century that led to the electrified railways of the northern part of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia using a different voltage to the rest of the country – 3,000 V d.c. as opposed to 25 kV a.c.

Initially trains were operated by locos which, dating from 1931/32, were even older than the catenary, and by the 1960s these not only needed replacement by more up-to-date machines, but the extension of the 3,000 V d.c. across the north required a bigger fleet of electrics full stop.


1061 106 (the former 362 107) bounds round the corner at Meja on a late running train bound for Rijeka.  I don’t think the driver was actually expecting to stop at this middle-of-nowhere shack, and I’m certain that neither the ‘initial’ nor ‘full service’ positions were on his mind when it came to the brake application!  26/08/11 (JW)

Naturally, given the Italian parentage of the 3,000 V d.c. network, the first fleet of electric locos built for it were from Italy, specifically the firm of Ansaldo-Breda in Genova, and were six-axle articulated machines based on the FS class E646s (albeit bearing a much stronger visual resemblance to the older class E636s).  JŽ christened these class 362.

Initially, 35 machines (362 001 to 362 035) were built between 1960 and 1964, followed by five more (362 036 to 362 040) in 1966/67.  A final ten locos to a different, slightly longer design featuring some amendments to the design arising from experience with the initial batches (362 101 to 362 110) followed in 1968.

An important design consideration of the 362s was their suitability for hill-climbing.  They were used on the very steeply-graded line out of Rijeka via Moravice to Zagreb in Croatia, which was also electrified at 3,000 V d.c. as a continuation of the line from Slovenia via Šapjane.  The section north of Moravice, however, was re-electrified to the standard 25 kV a.c. in the mid-1980s.

Rebuilds and Modifications

As was the case with their Italian cousins, the class 362 was generally a very successful design.  However, there were a few “updates” to the basic design over their 50-year history.

The machines that passed to the Croatian Railways (Hrvatske Željeznice, HŽ) after the collapse of the Yugoslavian federation were reclassified as 1061s.  Three of these – 362 005 (HŽ 1061 005), 362 007 (HŽ 1061 007) and 362 017 (HŽ 1061 016) – were rebuilt with new two-window cabs (see photo below), whereas 362 030 (HŽ 1061 021) was rebuilt with thyristor control.


1061 005 (362 005) – one of the three 1061s rebuilt with new cabs – awaits departure from Rijeka, 22/08/11 (JW)

The most significant rebuilds, however, were the class 462 (later HŽ 1161).  These were two 362s which were rebuilt to operate on 25 kV a.c – 362 106 becoming 462 001 in 1988 (later renumbered to 1161 001), and the former 362 003 following suit to become 1161 002 in 1991 – in the wake of the conversion of the Zagreb to Moravice line to that voltage.  These machines were nicknamed “Samanthas”.  However, they proved expensive to both convert and maintain, so no further “Samanthas” were ever created, and both were withdrawn early.  The section of line south of Moravice remained at 3,000 V d.c. for another 20 years, using standard 1061s.

Since 1991

At the break-up of Yugoslavia, 18 of the 362s passed to the Slovenian Railways (Slovenske Železnice, SŽ).  The remaining 32 – including the two “Samanthas” – became the property of the HŽ as their aforementioned 1061s and 1161s, in the case of the former specifically to work between Šapjane, Rijeka and Moravice.


362 034 is seen dumped on the shed at Zidani Most, long after the class’s withdrawal in Slovenia.  24/08/10 (JW)

The Slovenes replaced the 362s with the brand new class 541s between 2005 and 2009.  362 027 has passed to the collection of the railway museum (Železniški Muzej) in Ljubljana.  It was reported in 2008 that two machines, 362 029 and 362 031, were sold to the Czech Republic and possibly later passed on to Poland, but I’m not sure what has become of them – please contact me if you know!  (Three of the HŽ locos – 1061 0131061 021 and 1061 105 – returned to Italy for private-owner use having been rebuilt with especially hideous-looking new cabs, but do not appear to have been a success there).

The Croatian locos lasted slightly longer in traffic, but were made redundant not by new locomotives but by the loss of any railway to work on.  The Šapjane to Moravice route and branch to Bakar, Croatia’s only 3,000 V d.c. routes since the mid-1980s, was re-electrified at 25 kV a.c. in 2012, causing the withdrawal of the class by default.