When the railway stations became increasingly important at the beginning of the 20th century, they also faced new challenges. In the transportation of goods they now had to compete with trucks. Road vehicles had the advantage that they didn’t have to loose valuable time while changing rails.
At the stations trains were moved by a normal locomotive. A complicated and lengthy procedure that was only used because powerful locomotives were too expensive in purchase and preservation. For reasons like that small locomotives were developed. They were real workhorses, easy to operate by one person and much less expensive than their big sisters. They soon became a success even outside the railway stations.
Mini locomotives were also manufactured by the Austro-Daimler company. They had an air-cooled two-cylinder engine with 6 hp and chain driving all 4 wheels. The one shown on the picture did its duty in 1918 on the field railway tracks of a sawmill.