Hornby’s Notwork Class 50

Sadly, the much anticipated original NSE Class 50 is a disappointment.

Hornby NSE Class 50

THE ENGLISH ELECTRIC Class 50 was the first of Hornby’s new high specification diesel locomotives to be released, way back in late-2003, before even the publication of the first RAIL EXPRESS Modeller supplement. Even more incredible is that it has taken us this long to get a release of the ‘Hoover’ in original Network SouthEast.

So, finally, it’s here! Imagine our disappointment then when we finally got our hands on No. 50048 Dauntless (Cat Ref. R2793, RRP £108.50), after lobbying so hard for it to be produced, to find that it was wrong. The most glaring error relates to the familiar angled upsweeps at the four corners, which can be seen in the illustrations.

Hornby NSE Class 50

Being based firmly in the former NSE empire, Hornby should well know that the three rhomboids are all of a similar widths – it’s not as if the much-missed London & South Eastern operator was shy about where it slapped its logo. Yet for some reason the white is way too wide, while the grey and red are too narrow.

Hornby NSE Class 50

Again, the red is too dark as per the Class 31 released just a week or so before this model, while the shade of warning yellow is almost mustard! On a more nitpicking note, the thin white separating stripe along the base of the body should be thinner, while the numbers are clearly oversize.

It is beyond belief how such a well known colour scheme could be messed up in this way, especially as the box art looks much better – different artists maybe? Whatever, this is simply not good enough and hopefully Hornby will re-run the same livery next year. For now though, one to avoid.


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