The V 100 series (later known as 211, 213 and 213) was developed at the end of the 1950s by the former German Federal Railways to replace the last steam locomotives on non-electrified branch lines. It was designed for light passenger and freight services up to 100 km/h.

The V 90 (later 290-295) was derived from the V 100 in the mid-1960s, but was intended for heavy shunting service. With a maximum speed of 80 km/h, it is also suitable for hauling freight trains for short-distance trips.
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