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Turboliner and TurboTrain

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  • Member since
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Turboliner and TurboTrain
Posted by southernpacificgs4 on Sunday, May 21, 2023 4:36 PM

I was on the web site of  Rapido and saw they will bring out the Turboliner and again the TurboTrain.

I was surprised by the price of those items, both items will cost an arm and leg.

Th price for a 3 car Turboliner is $US 949.95 and additional cars are at $US129.95.

The DC version are slightly cheaper.

The prices of model trains are sky rocketing.
 
I bought the original French Turoliner (the US version was based on the French train) in a 5 car set DCC/sound for 799€.
 
What is the explanation for the price difference between the European model and the American model.
 
I would think that the number of pieces of the American model to be sold in the USA will be larger than the French model in France. (maybe there are made in the same factory in China)
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Posted by BEAUSABRE on Sunday, May 21, 2023 4:51 PM

Sounds like a deal. 

  • Member since
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  • From: Collinwood, Ohio, USA
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Posted by gmpullman on Sunday, May 21, 2023 6:06 PM


I have two versions of the previously run Rapido, U-A Turbo Train. They are the 'Improved Gearing' ones but I still had cracked gears on some of the drive axles.

 Turbo_PC52-Amtrak50 by Edmund, on Flickr

I run them as five car and seven car sets (not quite prototypical for the U.S. versions) as I found additional intermediate cars for $25. each and couldn't pass them up.

The New Haven/Penn-Central train, IIRC only ran with one intermediate coach.

I'll probably get at least one of the new Turbo Trains. While I saw the Turboliners running in the Detroit-Chicago circuit I really don't have much desire for these.

I did ride the U-A Turbos in the early 1970s on the former New Haven so I have more inclination to model these.

 Amtrak Turbo 9-1973 mb by mbernero, on Flickr

Cheers, Ed

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Posted by tstage on Sunday, May 21, 2023 6:18 PM

southernpacificgs4
I bought the original French Turoliner (the US version was based on the French train) in a 5 car set DCC/sound for 799€.
 
What is the explanation for the price difference between the European model and the American model.
 
I would think that the number of pieces of the American model to be sold in the USA will be larger than the French model in France. (maybe there are made in the same factory in China)

 
FYI: Please keep the thread on the above quoted topic about price difference.  However, should it migrate to discussion about the increasing cost of the hobby, it will not last long.  Thanks for you cooperation.
 
Tom

https://tstage9.wixsite.com/nyc-modeling

Time...It marches on...without ever turning around to see if anyone is even keeping in step.

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Posted by maxman on Sunday, May 21, 2023 8:08 PM

southernpacificgs4
I would think that the number of pieces of the American model to be sold in the USA will be larger than the French model in France.

I'm not sure that is the case.  I would think that the French version would be used country wide, while the American version would be used in a smaller region.

  • Member since
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  • From: Massachusetts
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Posted by Paul3 on Monday, May 22, 2023 12:14 AM

One thing to keep in mind is that there are several important factors that effect the final retail price of any model.  One of those that we will never have hard evidence of is the expected amount to be made.  A model company will calculate all the costs in making a model, then divide by the projected number to be made.  The result should be an affordable price that makes a decent profit for the company, wholesalers, and retailers.

For example, if a company spends $80,000 on tooling and makes 3000 cars, they are each going to cost more than if they make 10,000 of the same cars.

I'm going out on a limb here, but I'm guessing the French RTG HO model is probably being made in far greater numbers than the US RTL HO model (which originally was a conditional release by Rapido).  There were only 7 US RTL trainsets in real life, and those ran almost entirely in New York State (of 20 million people).  The 41 French RTG's ran on 5 different lines all across France (pop. 68 million).  Probably everyone in France saw or rode on an RTG as rail travel is very popular there.  In the USA, only people who traveled entirely inside the state of NY by rail ever rode an RTL, and rail travel as we know isn't as popular here.

The difference in price is about $130 between the RPM RTG and Rapido RTL versions if you convert Euros to Dollars, BTW.

One other thing I wasn't able to determine is how many drives are in the RTG model.  The Rapido RTL model has two power cars that each have their own motor, sound decoder, and speakers.  I don't know if the RPM RTG model has that as I never took French and the various online pics & videos are not obvious.  But if the French models only have one drive & one sound decoder, that may also explain the price difference.

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Posted by Darth Santa Fe on Monday, May 22, 2023 6:40 PM

Owning an original set myself, I can see a lot of areas for improvement, most of all in the chassis.  The new Turbo is being made with completely new tooling for sharper and more accurate detail, the chassis is being redesigned for better and more reliable operation, and they'll most likely be using higher quality sound and electronics.  The original set released for $500 in 2008, which comes to $700 now counting for inflation, so the new base 3-car sets are technically only $50 more (in US dollars) than the originals.  And like Paul3 mentioned, the demand might be low enough that they have to charge more per model to compensate.  The company has to make a profit if they want to stay in business.

The new intermediate cars do cost quite a bit more than the old ones, but if they make some good improvements, then the cost increase is understandable.  The electrical link between these and the power cars in the original set was clever, but kind of flaky, and they didn't roll that well.  As for the power cars, all of my axle gears were split.  I managed to repair it using the axle gears from the Bachmann N scale PCC trolley and fix some of the other issues that caused poor running along the way.

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