How to Track your Ford Truck by Railcar?

For many customers, purchasing a new Ford truck is an exciting experience. An important part of this process is tracking the vehicle’s delivery, especially when it is being transported by rail. Rail transportation is a common method for delivering new vehicles from the factory to dealerships.

When you buy a Ford truck, especially a custom or pre-ordered one, it’s often transported to the dealership by rail. Knowing how to track it during this journey is essential for anticipating its arrival.

Tracking your Ford truck by railcar is a key aspect of monitoring its delivery after purchase. Understanding the specifics of this process can greatly enhance your experience.

Here’s a detailed explanation incorporating the additional information provided:

What is Railcar Tracking?

Railcar tracking refers to the process of monitoring the progress of a railcar that is transporting goods – in this case, your new Ford truck. This system allows you to track the geographic location and status of your vehicle as it moves from the manufacturing plant to your local dealership.

Obtaining Railcar Information

First, you need the specific railcar letters and numbers that your truck is assigned to. This information can usually be found on the visibility report or Dealer Order Receipt Acknowledgement (DORA) provided by the dealership. Alternatively, you may contact Ford’s Special Vehicle Team (SVT), though they might direct you to the dealership for this information.

Understanding Rail Networks

The rail transport of your Ford truck is typically handled by major rail companies:

  • CSX: Covers areas east of the Mississippi River.
  • Union Pacific (UP): Operates west of the Mississippi River.

Initially, all trucks start on CSX, and then they may be transferred to UP depending on the destination.

Railcar Tracking Method:

CSX Railcar Tracking

  1. Call CSX at 1-800-235-2352.
  2. Choose Location Tracking: When prompted for location or weight, press “1” for location.
  3. Enter Car Initials: Say the car initials (e.g., CN) and wait for the prompt.
  4. Enter Car Number: Say the car number (e.g., 907048).
  5. Conclude Tracking: When asked for the next car, say “DONE”.
  6. Receive Status: The system will provide the updated status of your truck.

Union Pacific Railcar Tracking

  1. Call UP at 1-800-877-5123.
  2. Select ‘Trace’ Option: Follow phone prompts for Trace.
  3. Enter Railcar Number: Clearly state the complete railcar number (e.g., CN123456).
  4. Listen for Update: The system will provide the current status of your railcar.

Railcar Tracking Process

Obtaining Railcar Information:

Contact Ford or your dealership to obtain the railcar number assigned to your vehicle. This is typically provided after the vehicle is manufactured and loaded for shipping.

Using Rail Company’s Tracking System:

Different rail companies have their tracking systems. For instance:

  • CSX: Call 1-800-235-2352 and follow the prompts to enter your railcar information​​.
  • Union Pacific: Call 1-800-877-5123 and follow the voice prompts to trace your railcar​​.
  • NS Norfolk Southern: Call 800-635-5768, follow the prompts, and enter the railcar information using the numeric keypad​​.

Tracking Online via Ford:

Use Ford’s Vehicle Order Tracking tool online by entering your Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) and Order Number, which can be obtained from your selling dealer​​.

Contacting Your Selling Dealer:

If the vehicle was ordered through a dealer, they can provide updates and assist in tracking the vehicle order status​​.

Using Automated Systems

It’s crucial to use only automated phone systems for tracking. Attempting to contact live personnel at the railroad companies is discouraged, as the railcar information is provided as a courtesy, and overburdening their customer service might lead to the loss of this privilege.

Additional Considerations

  • Accuracy and Updates: Tracking information may not be real-time and can sometimes have delays.
  • Railcar Number: It’s crucial to have the correct railcar number for accurate tracking.
  • Multiple Rail Companies: Your vehicle may switch rail companies during transit, requiring tracking through different systems.
  • Customer Service: Always use automated systems to avoid overburdening rail company customer service, which is primarily for business use​​.


How do I find out which rail company is transporting my Ford truck?

This information should be provided by Ford or your dealership when you receive your railcar number.

Can I track my Ford truck if it switches rail companies during transit?

Yes, but you will need to use the tracking system of the new rail company once the switch occurs.

How accurate is railcar tracking for Ford trucks?

While tracking provides a general idea of your vehicle’s location, there may be delays in updates, and the information may not be real-time.

What should I do if I cannot track my Ford truck?

If you encounter issues, contact your dealership for assistance, as they can access detailed tracking information.


Tracking your Ford truck by railcar is a straightforward process that provides peace of mind and excitement as you anticipate the arrival of your new vehicle. By understanding the tracking process and using the resources provided by Ford and the rail companies, you can stay informed about your vehicle’s journey from the factory to your local dealership.

Remember to keep your railcar information handy and regularly check for updates to ensure a smooth and informed delivery experience.