Conrail had 135 "fightin fifties" numbered 6700 through 6834 and built from 1983 through 1986. Conrail's fleet of SD50's (the second largest in the country) were delivered with a number of variations from "stock" EMD units. The first three orders (delivered in 1983, 84 and 85) all came equipped with EMD's older Flexicoil truck instead of the standard, at the time, HTC-II truck. This was because of Conrail's erroneously blaming the HTC truck for a number of derailments involving AMTRAK units. It turned out not to be the fault of the truck, and the last order that arrived in 1986 was delivered with the standard EMD trucks. The second two orders (6779-6834) were also delivered with a large 4,500 gallon fuel tank, as opposed to the 4,000 gallon tank on the previous two orders.

In 1999, the fleet was divided between Norfolk Southern and CSX. Those assigned to NS were renumbered into the 5400-5477 series, while CSX allocated units became 8499, 8644-8699. In addition to the above, CSXT 8668-8699 and NS 5446-5477 went to NREX.
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