The term "Limited Edition" refers to items which are not in the annual Bachmann catalogue and consist of a much smaller run than those produced for normal distribution. These items are usually produced for retailers, model railway magazines, our own Bachmann Collectors' Club or exhibitions which are part sponsored by Bachmann. Understandably there has been a growing interest in these items and following much adverse comment, Bachmann Europe Plc wishes to clarify its position relating to Limited Edition items.
Limited edition models have a minimum run of 504 but can also be 750 or 1008 pieces. Producing a limited edition model involves considerable risk on behalf of the commissioners and there are examples that have failed to sell in the past. Some sell out quickly but others do not.
For Bachmann to rerun any Limited Edition model there has to be detail differences, livery changes or a change of running number and/or name. For example, the Freightliner / Shanks Class 66 locomotive has now received a revised livery and will be rerun. It has acquired the 40th Anniversary logo applied and has had blue squares applied to its cab sides to indicate its suitability for infrastructure work. Additionally the model will receive weathering to its roof around the exhaust ports.
Additionally the new Southern Class 171 being produced for Model Zone will consist of a two car unit and will carry a different running number from the previous example. The livery is consistent across the fleet of Class 171 units operated by Southern Railway.
Finally the Class 158 produced for Model Rail, Scotland was the first unit to carry the First ScotRail livery. Examples have previously been produced in the initial ScotRail and 'Whoosh' liveries and in the interim livery adopted by First Group after they won the franchise from the previous operators, National Express Group. As this livery is being applied across the whole fleet operated by First Group in Scotland, further models will no doubt appear during the lifetime of this franchise with the only difference being the running numbers carried by the unit and on individual vehicles. The model produced for Model Rail, Scotland is the only Class 158 so far to have carried this livery and our Class 170 has already carried it. We have at no time stated that we would not release further Class 158s in this livery, although clearly a change of running number will be required. It will be seen in Scotland at least until October 2011 when the current franchise expires.
Graham Hubbard, Managing Director of Bachmann Europe Plc said today "we appreciate that some of the limited edition models are purchased for investment rather than operational use but, the usual caveat of prices moving up and down applies and we would express caution to anyone who purchases models purely for financial investment. We consider that our policy of batch production remains a fair and honest one and that Limited Edition models will only be repeated if we can clearly demonstrate differences between the original and subsequent production. Although we rarely repeat them, there is nothing to stop us repeating items that have appeared as part of our normal range. We trust that by issuing this statement, we have clarified our position on the production of Limited Edition models."