British Rail realised that rising traffic levels to Gatiwck Airport needed something better than the existing service of modified 4-VEP EMUs and the Gatwick Express was launched in 1984. Operated by the Inter-City sector, this was to be a 15 minute interval 100mph service from London Victoria, using high-quality air-conditioned stock.
Employing typical Southern ingenuity, 8 car rakes of MkIID Coaches were modified to be hauled by Class 73s, with a driving luggage van at the London end converted from a former 2-HAP suburban EMU. The coaches were formed into semi permanent 4-car rakes and designated Class 488, with the GLV (Gatwick Luggave Van) as Class 489. The units were delivered in Inter-City Executive livery and, as time passed, received the later "Swallow" style and finally a modified scheme when privatised.
In 1999 Stylish new Alstom 8-Car Class 460 "Juniper" units were introduced, with the aim of total emilniation of the loco-hauled rakes, though this did not happene, due to poor reliability, until 2006.
The Electra kits full colour, pre-cut vinyl bodyside vinyl overlays for the MKII coach with a separate GLV. The GLV is modified from a Graham Farish MK1, the passenger stock is designed to fit the MkII coaches. The Class 73 Electro-Diesel is available from Dapol as a ready to run model, in a variety of appropriate liveries, including BR Blue / Large Logo Blue, Executive and Gatwick Express.
The vinyls are available in original Inter-City Executive Livery, Post 1989 INTERCITY Swallow and post 1997 "Gatwick Express" Livery.
Thanks to Chris Parker of the N Gauge Forum for the photographs.
Available in original Inter-City Executive Livery, Post-1989 INTERCITY Swallow and post-1997 GATWICK EXPRESS Livery.
|Class 488 MkII Coach - Open Second|
|Class 488 MkII Coach - Open First|
|Class 489 Mk1 Gatwick Luggage Van|
|5 Coach + GLV - £25.00|
|8 Coach + GLV - £30.00|
Also available as individual coaches - 1: £8.00, 2: £12.00, 3: £16.00, 4: £20.00