The First Red Engine
- “The driver won't choose you again. He wants big strong engines, like us.”
- ―The Big Engines to Edward
The First Red Engine lived at Vicarstown Sheds with Edward, Henry, Gordon, 98462 and 87546. It is unknown what happened to the engine afterwards, although he/she could have returned back to the Other Railway.
It is implied that the engine, along with the four other engines, liked to hurt Edward's feelings due to him being smaller and weaker than them.
The engine's basis is not known, with no outside cylinders or motion. He/she looks like a cross between Gordon and Henry in his old shape with a 4-6-2 wheel arrangement. However by the earlier illustrations made by William Middleton, it is arguable that he/she is an LNER B13 with two additional trailing wheels or an LNER Raven A2 Pacific.
The engine is painted in a red coat of paint, with yellow and black lining and has red wheels and a black dome.
- The Three Railway Engines - Edward's Day Out (not named) and The Sad Story of Henry (William Middleton only; does not speak)
The Second Red Engine
This red engine once tried to push Henry out of a tunnel, but without success. It is unknown what happened to the engine following this event.
This engine was originally illustrated to be James. However, children wrote to the Reverend asking why James was red before he got repainted in the third book. With all the confusion, Awdry decided that it was not James, but was instead a different character altogether.
The engine's personality is somewhat unknown; it is possible he/she is a helpful and obedient sort, having tried to push Henry out of the tunnel, by order of the Fat Director.
This engine is based on an L&YR Class 28 with an added pony truck, a Belpaire firebox and a Fowler tender, very much like James. However it might have been the same basis as the first one, since the earlier illustrations showed him/her as a 4-6-2.
This engine is painted red with yellow and black lining. He/she has red wheels and a red dome.
- In the original, Middleton illustrations, the first and second red engines were depicted as the same character, hence them having had the same wheel configuration.
- The engine's role in The Sad Story of Henry was replaced by Thomas when the story was adapted into the television series. Ironically, James took his/her role in the special, The Adventure Begins.
The Red Tank Engines
Two Red Tank Engines appeared in a magazine story. They were never named and their origins are not known.
Both Engines are painted red with yellow lining and black wheels.
The Picture Engine
A Red Tender Engine once appeared on a picture in the Fat Controller's office.
This engine appeared in Thomas and the Tiger.
The Picture Engine is painted red, with black lining and a black smokebox.