The GVR has a large collection of ex-New Zealand Railways locomotives, carriages & goods wagons that were saved from the scrap yard. Today many of them have been restored and can be seen operating on the Railway. The GVR has three separate ‘train sets’ including the "Red Train" which operates every Sunday. The "Yellow Train" is the GVR’s Heritage Mainline Excursion train, which operates during special events at the GVR, but more importantly operates special public trips on the New Zealand Railway national network. The final train is the "Green Train" which is the GVR’s special Dining Train and features two carriage specially restored and modified to constitute a state-of-the-art Dining Train. A number of other heritage carriages are in storage awaiting their turn for restoration and return to service.
Numerous heritage goods wagons were saved and found their way onto the GVR, some of very historic significance, including an 1878 6-wheeled hand crane. A number of wagons are used regularly over the railway for maintenance and work trains every week, whereas the more historic and valuable wagons are used only on the special Railfans Day that GVR operates occasionally.