Dapol reviews new Class 59 production samples

25 January 2024
Dapol’s new N gauge Class 59 features a re-designed chassis and electronics and is expected in stores this Spring.

The new model also incorporates the same iron-cored 5-pole motor that is used in the N Gauge Class 50 and Class 68 and includes DCC Ready, DCC Fitted and DCC Sound versions. 


  • Smooth running 5 pole next generation motor                 
  • All-wheel pickup, all-wheel drive via re-worked smooth drive low maintenance mechanism
  • Die-cast chassis                         
  • DCC Sound ready, Next-18 decoder socket (recommended 6 function decoder)  
  • Independent directional front/rear main lighting control                         
  • Switchable day/night lights (DC & DCC)                      
  • Main lamp and cab lighting override switches for DC users (Independent front/rear control)    
  • Removable self-centring close coupling mechanism with NEM pockets              
  • Standard NEM fitting N Gauge couplers                         
  • RP 25 wheels                
  • Printed name plates (where applicable)                     
  • Accessory bag with etched nameplates and detailed buffer beam fittings                     
  • Clip-fit body for easy DCC fitting           
  • All Factory fitted DCC Locomotives will be fitted with Dapol’s Imperium Next 18 decoder All Factory Sound fitted models will be fitted with a Zimo Decoder and prototypical sound recording  

Proposed liveries

  • Kenneth J Painter 59005 Foster Yeoman Silver (pictured above)
  • Village Of Mells 59103 ARC

  • John F Yeoman 59206 DB Schenker

  • 59204 National Power Blue

  • 59104 Hanson Village of Great Elm

  • 59001 Aggregate Industries Yeoman Endeavour

  • 59201 EWS Vale of York

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The models are now in transit to the UK and are expected in shops around the start of March, however, this may be slightly delayed due to the current complications relating to international shipping.

Prices are as follows; £172.80 for DCC Ready, £205.20 for DCC Fitted and £291.60 for DCC Sound. 

About the prototype

The Class 59 is a Co-Co formation diesel locomotive and the first US-produced, privately-owned locomotive to operate regularly in the UK. The ordering of the first Class 59 was a result of quarry company Foster Yeoman’s dissatisfaction with the performance of the BR Class 56. The first 4 locomotives built by GM’s Electromotive Division were delivered to Foster Yeoman in 1986 and 59005 in 1989 proving very successful; one locomotive setting a new UK haulage record for a single locomotive of 4639 tonnes. Foster Yeomans rivals, Amey Roadstone Corp. (ARC) also ordered four modified Class 59s (59/1) as did National Power, who ordered six (59/2). GM invested in this initial UK success by extensively modifying the Class 59 internally to produce the Class 66, also hugely successful, within both the UK and continental Europe. Other than 59003 (which after return from loan to HHPI in Germany, is operated by GBRf), the Class 59 fleet is operated today by DB Schenker and Mendip Rail (an ARC and FY joint venture). 

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