|This article is about the characters. You may be looking for the first season episode, the fourth season episode, the song, the Story Library book or the Engine Adventures book.|
- “"On! On! On!"”
- ―The Troublesome Trucks' usual chant while pushing an engine
The Troublesome Trucks (called Cars, originally known as Foolish Freight Cars, in the US narration) are always nicknamed so because they can be very troublesome, and love to play tricks on the engines, barring Edward, Stepney, Hiro, and Salty. The trucks have been the cause of most of the railway's accidents. However, since Douglas smashed the Spiteful Brake Van and Oliver pulled S.C. Ruffey, their leader, apart, they have been frightened of some engines.
There have, however, been some cases where the trucks and engines are on the same side, such as when Diesel was given a third chance on Sodor, but the trucks tricked him into misbehaving and getting sent away again. They also asked Percy to help move them from an ill-mannered and obnoxious barge named Bulstrode, only to end up in his hull and damage him, resulting in him being sent to a beach.
When Thomas and Edward switched jobs back when the former was a station pilot, the trucks pushed him down Gordon's Hill all the way to a siding. They then decided to trick James and him into a field. When James was given a second chance after ruining a coach's brake pipe, they tried to discourage him. The tail of the train uncoupled and the rest of the trucks rolled down the hill for James to recover. They later shoved him into some tar wagons.
Trucks were also a nuisance in the second season, as they refused to let Diesel move them out of a siding. This lead to an accident and as Diesel was forced to clear the mess, they taunted him with a song. Diesel blamed Duck for it and to get Duck back, made the trucks insult the three tender engines using the Great Western Engine's name. Devastated, Duck went to help Edward with his trucks up a hill, only for them to break away and cause Duck to crash into a barber shop, push Percy into the sea, tiring James, and shove Percy into a brake van.
They also bumped Thomas into a condemned track after losing their chance to pay James out and pushed Oliver into a turntable well. When the latter came back from the works, the trucks still laughed at him, but after he pulled S.C. Ruffey into pieces, they became loyal to him to minimise their chances of being ripped apart themselves.
The trucks also pulled Thomas down a hill into Salty and got James covered in melons.
The trucks teased James when he smashed them into the snow. When the Pack was building a new bandstand, they refused to move until Percy used his "do-as-I-say" whistle. They have since been good, but they soon decided to put a stop to their good streak by pulling Thomas and Percy down a hill and causing Stephen to get trapped in Ulfstead Mine. They have since been troublesome after this incident.
Thomas had once accidentally shunted them too hard and were just as confused as everyone else when Thomas blamed an imaginary engine named Geoffrey. They also laughed at Den when he was working at the quarry when Mavis was being repaired.
Every wise engine knows trucks cannot be trusted. Trucks could be considered the rebels and the troublemakers of all rolling stock on the railway, as most of them love to cause mischief and trouble and show no remorse for whatever they do unless told off by their engine. If an engine is having a bad day, makes a mistake, or is easily played upon, the trucks begin their wild antics of singing, name calling, holding back, shoving, bumping, giggling and so on. They will play tricks on an engine based on how they treat them. Most accidents caused by the trucks are a form of revenge due to mistreatment and they are not known for considering the consequences of their actions; they will carry out their plans even if they result in derailing, damaging or destroying themselves.
Trucks can also be described as territorial; when they get used to certain engines pulling them, another engine in the yard to take them may cause confusion or anger for the trucks. In Percy's Predicament for example, Toby and Percy switched jobs, making Toby's trucks furious and causing Percy to crash. In Oliver Owns Up, the trucks refused for Oliver to take them and demanded Duck, Donald or Douglas instead.
To the trucks, one engine is as good as another, as on one occasion they took their anger out on Thomas when they could not get back at James for bumping them.
During the thirteenth and sixteenth seasons, they behaved unusually well but were easily annoyed. From King of the Railway onwards, they have regained their old personalities, misbehaving and causing accidents.
Troublesome Trucks are based on 5 and 7-plank open wagons. In Journey Beyond Sodor, two Troublesome Trucks were based on 2-bar wooden slate wagons.
In the Railway Series and Model Series the Troublesome Trucks originally had many different liveries such as brown, black, green, orange, pink, blue and yellow but from Season 17 and onwards all Troublesome Trucks were painted either in light grey or dark grey. Privately-owned Troublesome Trucks typically have their own specific livery.
- Trucks are never named; however, those that are privately owned tend to take on the name of their owner, like S.C. Ruffey, Fred Pelhay, U.L.P., Old Bennett and possibly Rickety.
- From the sixth season onwards in the US, the term "truck" is used more often. In more recent seasons, however, the US has been more consistent in using the term "car", unless referring to the trucks with faces.
- The audio clip of the trucks laughing heard from the second through seventh seasons is actually Junior Campbell's laughing sound in a higher-pitch, as is the clip of the trucks singing their song, "Pop Goes the Diesel".
- This makes the trucks the first characters to have individual voice actors in English-speaking countries.
- In the first season, the Troublesome Trucks had paper eyes and a paper mouth similar to how Annie and Clarabel's were made. This however, disabled the trucks from having multiple emotions until the second season.
- The Troublesome Trucks went through several aesthetic changes in the television series:
- Season 2:
- The Trucks gained face masks to allow a greater variety of facial expressions, some Season 1 trucks do still appear in the second season however.
- Season 12:
- The Trucks have the same face design.
- Season 13:
- The trucks now have slightly different noses from each other (though they retain the same basic face design).
- The open topped wagons became taller.
- The black and grey trucks seem to be the only ones that have faces.
- Season 14:
- The Trucks' faces disappear, leaving all trucks without faces.
- Season 16:
- The grey and black trucks regain their faces.
- Season 17:
- All trucks are now grey.
- The trucks now have identical faces with no distinguishing features, just as they did in the twelfth season.
- Season 20:
- The Goods Vans regain their faces.
- Journey Beyond Sodor:
- The tankers and salt vans regain their faces.
- Up-scaled narrow gauge slate trucks were introduced, with an entirely new face design.
- Season 2:
- The trucks were to have a larger role in Thomas and the Magic Railroad, but they were cut from the final film.
- Until King of the Railway, the Troublesome Trucks caused no accidents after the ninth season episode, Emily Knows Best and had no speaking roles after the twelfth season.
- According to the Railway Series book, Oliver the Western Engine, ballast trucks are considered to be the worst of all.
- Some face masks of S.C. Ruffey, Toad, Bulstrode and The Spiteful Brake Van have been seen on the trucks.
- Between the eighth and nineteenth seasons, only the open wagons were referred to as "Troublesome Trucks".
- In both the UK and US narrations of the CGI Series, the trucks have American accents, apart from one truck in Tale of the Brave who had a British accent.
- From the first season to the fifth season, the wagons and Troublesome Trucks used in the television series were made out of vaccuformed plastic Tenmille gauge 1 kits. The company still exists today, but the vaccuformed kits have been replaced with more accurate laser cut wood versions.
- Two original Troublesome Truck face masks are now owned by Twitter user ThomasTankMerch.
- The wind-up models are repainted from JNR Tora90000-type's toys.
- Starting with the twenty-first season, the trucks are able to lean onto their sides.