Mitsui Rail Capital Europe (MRCE) is a rolling stock leasing company, part of the Japan based Mitsui conglomerate. In 2005 it invested in several types of Bombardier electrics, including two batches of AC1 electrics. After MRCE had acquired the Dispolok fleet from Siemens, back in 2006, it started to rearrange its activities. Since January 2008, all operational locomotive leasing and rental activities are the responsibility of MRCE's department in Munich, renamed MRCE Dispolok.
The seven machines of the second batch were the very first electrics, not built by Alstom, that were availabe to open access operators to penetrate the French market. 185 557 was also the very last built Traxx 1 locomotive built by Bombardier. Having Traxx 1 machine was an explicit demand of MRCE, making it possible to profit from the fact that similar machines in service of the DB (185 020-039) already were approved for France. For Traxx 2 otherwise a complete new and expensive homologation process had to be initiated. All machines were delivered in Mitsui standard black, but differ on details like MRCE logos and white front surfaces.
In January 2008, together with the launch of the new name MRCE Dispolok, also a new corporate identity was being introduced. In Ocotber 2008 first units (185 553 and 554) from the batches described in this section were therefore repainted. Base colour is still black, but its now decoreated with white and red up front for better visibility, and MRCE Dispolok logos all around.