Thursday, May 19, 2005

GM terminates licensing of 1:87 scale models

GM ( General Motors) has terminated all licensing of 1:87 scale models of their products. This policy is said to cover all GM vehicle brands worldwide. The reasoning behind this move may be ignorance of many things. Firstly, if they are reasoning that models larger then 1:87 present less of a choking hazzard for children - what about the detail parts present on the larger models. These it would seem, present the same hazzard. Also , some 1:64 scale models are actually smaller than certain 1:87 models.

Secondly - if they feel that 1:87 vehicles do not reach a market of significant size, they have no idea of the size of the HO railroading market in the United States alone ( forget about the rest of the world). It is estimated that a quater-million people participate in model railroading in the US. Approzimately 60% of those people identify HO or 1:87 as their primary scale. Now if you are populating a layout you need at least one vehicle per driveway, many vehicles per parking lot and some aditional vehicles to make your highways look "alive". That's going to be a lot of Fords and Chrysler products!!!!

Perhaps GM will see the error of their ways and "recall" their decision to limit their licensing to models 1:64 and larger; however, if not I've seen rumblings suggesting that no new HO GM models might translate into no new 1:1 scale models in the driveways. Time will tell.

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