- My name's Philip! Phi-lip. Like Philip! We can have a race if you like!"
- — Philip, Toby's New Friend
Philip came to the Island of Sodor as the new shunting engine at Knapford. During his first day of work, he was eager to impress Gordon by showing him how fast he was, but nothing he did was enough to impress him. He challenged Gordon to a race and took off out of the yard, racing all the way to Brendam Docks. However, he seemed oblivious to the fact that Gordon had not actually competed.
Philip continued to be proud of his speed and boasted about how many trucks he could pull. After taking a train of empty trucks to the quarry, he found James hanging over the top of a tunnel, having had an accident after trying to prove to Philip how many trucks he could pull instead. Just as James began to fall down, Philip caught him with the top of his cab roof in order to not let him fall. When James was rescued and sent to the Steamworks, Philip proudly told the engines of his rescue.
Later, Philip was eager to make friends with Toby, thinking he was a diesel boxcab like himself, but the tram engine was overwhelmed by Philip's enthusiasm. The two of them briefly raced each other until Philip nearly collided with Thomas. Philip then learned how to be quiet from Toby, but he tends to still be enthusiastic from time to time.
In The Great Race, Philip was among the many engines who were eager for Sir Topham Hatt to take them to the Great Railway Show. After Thomas' encounter with Ashima following the show's competitors' accidental arrival on Sodor, Philip insisted that the foreign engines were nothing but trouble and advised Thomas to avoid her.
Ultimately, Philip was not chosen to compete in the Great Railway Show, instead representing Sodor in the show as its mascot and flag carrier. At the show, a series of incidents occurred between him and Vinnie, getting in Vinnie's way twice. Vinnie lost patience with Philip and chased him briefly before getting covered in coal from a hopper where Carlos was taking on coal. Vinnie, infuriated, chased Philip around the railway show yard, eventually winding up in the middle of the shunting competition. Vinnie derailed two of Gina's flatbeds before trying to force the little shunter into a turntable well. Thomas and Ashima, both of whom were competing in the shunting competition, however, managed to couple up to the big tender engine and pull him clear of the points, allowing Philip to escape. After this, Thomas' coupling snapped, launching Vinnie off the tracks and into an electric pylon, which then fell on top of him. Philip then joined the other engines from Sodor to watch Thomas compete in the rest of the shunting competition, but one of the derailed flatbeds affected the result of the race, which led to Thomas forfeiting the race to save Ashima of her blocked track. Philip told the other Sudrian engines that he had warned Thomas that Ashima was trouble, only for the judges to give the victory to both Thomas and Ashima: Ashima for completing the challenge first and Thomas for his excellent sportsmanship. Philip later accompanied Sodor's team and Ashima back to Sodor.
Philip is a little diesel boxcab engine with a big personality. Philip is a comic character and a bit of a clown. He is very eager and full of enthusiasm and he has an innocent, but very overblown sense of his own capabilities. Philip can be very funny, but some of the bigger engines have very little patience for the little boxcab. Philip is strong, fast and likes to hurry about and can constantly boast about it. But Philip's confidence is as big if not bigger than anyone's and he is always willing to try and definitely believes in himself. His actions and attitude soon won him many new friends on Sodor, especially Thomas and Percy, but Gordon and James find his bragging a little hard to accept.
Despite this, Philip can be the exact opposite if he chooses to. He is shown being quiet and enjoying the scenery, just like Toby.
All in all, Philip reminds Edward of Thomas when he first came to Sodor.
Philip is based on the Pennsylvania Railroad's diesel-electric Class A6 "boxcab" switcher with an added back door and a circular back, as well as loose couplings and added buffers.
Philip is painted green and yellow with the number 68 on his sides in black, surrounded by a white circle.