"It's nicer than just a number. Having a name means that you really belong."
— Bear, Enterprising Engines

  • Number: D3, formerly D7101
  • Class: BR Class 35
  • Designer: Beyer Peacock Ltd.
  • Builder: Beyer Peacock Ltd.
  • Built: 1964
  • Configuration: Bo-Bo
  • Arrived on Sodor: 1967
  • Top speed: 90 mph

Bear the Limited, is a mixed traffic British diesel engine. He works on the Main Line with Gordon, Henry, James. He was originally known by his former number - D7101. He is good friends with BoCo.


Bear, as named "the Limited", was numbered D7101 and sometimes named by it, and he came to Sodor on loan with D199. He did not approve of D199's behavior, who was bad-mouthing the steam engines. D199 was rude, saying diesels are more reliable than steam engines, vulgar noises greeted this. Until, Duck shut D199 up and the Limited also managed to shut up D199 by making growling noises with his engine.

The next day, D199 broke down near a signalbox blocking the crossing. Ironically, the Limited broke down and had suffered a failed injector while pulling his express train, he roared at the coaches but it did no good! Henry was asked to help pull to "dead" diesel and their trains, but unfortunately Henry's regulator was jammed. The Limited was still able to move by himself with some help from Henry.

The passengers were cross at first, but when they heard about situation they thanked both engines. To the passengers' delight, Flying Scotsman took their train. The Fat Controller wasn't impressed with D199 and order him to be sent away in disgrace. Henry helped the Limited back to the shed and they struck up a great friendship.

The engines persuaded Sir Topham Hatt to let the Limited stay on his railway and was given second chance. The engines named him "Bear", because of the growling noises his engine makes. The name "Bear" soon stuck and he liked this name, saying it meant he "really belonged". By the time Oliver arrived on Sodor, Bear was repainted green.

The Fat Controller was impressed with BoCo and Bear, he called them "versatile" because they could pull both coaches and trucks. BoCo and Bear usually defend the steam engines, when a visiting diesel boasts about how special they are. Bear and his partner, a British electric goods engine from the Peel Godred Branch Line, pull the Express when Gordon, Henry and James are busy. He is easy-going and friendly even James, who was the last to accept diesels, couldn't help but like him!


Bear is one of the more useful diesel locomotives to haul trains for the Fat Controller. He is a loyal and friendly sort, but often makes unusual growling noises much to the disturbance of the other engines; thus earning the name "Bear".

Behind the Scenes

Bear was originally going to appear in the Television Series, but he was never featured due to financial reasons; hence why Season 3 featured a limited about of new characters. It can be assumed he was set to appear before Oliver's introduction. 


Bear is based on a BR Class 35 "Hymek" Bo-Bo. His initial number, 7101, is an in-joke: the Class 35 was only numbered up to 7100.


Bear is currently painted in the livery he should have carried when first built: all-over B.R. loco green with a narrow band of lime along the bottom of the sides with cream window surrounds and yellow warning panels.

When he first arrived on Sodor, he wore the B.R. "Rail Blue" livery with yellow warning panels.


Railway Series

Bear also made infrequent appearances in various Annuals and Railway Series related books.


  • The rear cab of Bear's Hornby and ERTL models have a headcode reading "AC 47".
  • The ERTL and Hornby ranges depict Bear in his BR blue livery and name him "D7101 Diesel".
  • On the Tidmouth Grand Tour, Bear is depicted with a grey face rather than his yellow one, most likely to match the other engines.


  • ERTL (discontinued)
  • Hornby (2012 reintroduction; discontinued)


Merchandise Gallery

North Western Railway
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