A perfect pair: Kühn Modell & Digital hands over TT to ROCO
- Autumn 2023: ROCO will become a full-range supplier for TT tracks
- Takeover of the entire TT range of forms from German company Kühn Modell & Digital
- This will make ROCO number 2 in the TT segment
- 2024: Over 50 models in the TT product range
The expansion of ROCO continues down its successful path. In October 2023, ROCO will become a full-range supplier for the 1:120 scale “table top” (TT) gauge. This has been made possible by the takeover of the entire TT range of forms of German company Kühn Modell & Digital. This puts ROCO at the top in this segment, right behind market leader Tillig. This means that model railway fans will have 40 ROCO product families with their own track systems in the usual level of detail to choose from in the future. “With this significant expansion of our product range in the TT sector, we expect a growth in turnover of around 2 million EUR. We are very pleased to be able to take over the entire product range as well as all tools and equipment from Kühn,” said managing directors of Modelleisenbahn GmbH (Irmtraud Königshofer, Björn Döring and Erwin Negeli) with satisfaction about the successful deal. Torsten Kühn, the founder of the company, sees it the same way: ”I know that my life’s work, my TT product range, will be in good hands and that’s why it’s not so hard for me to say goodbye.” The new ROCO TT product range will be presented at the “Modell-Hobby-Spiel” trade fair.
A classic win-win situation: ROCO and Kühn Modell & Digital
“Like us, Torsten Kühn is a professional developer who gives a lot of attention to detail, and we have known each other for a long time. We had 13 product families in the TT segment with locomotives and freight wagons, but no passenger cars or track systems. Now we are rounding out our range and becoming a full-range supplier,” says Björn Döring. 27 TT product families – containing locomotives and related products such as control cars and seating and double-decker coaches – together with the track system as well as a locomotive and two N-gauge coaches are being added to the 13 ROCO TT product families. When it comes to the N-gauge with a scale of 1:160, FLEISCHMANN is the market leader in Europe. With the TT-gauge, an important pillar is being added and is consolidating ROCO’s lead position in the two-rail direct current segment.
In 2024, more than 50 models will be offered in the ROCO TT product range, including stars such as the class 38 steam locomotives, electric locomotives such as the well-known “dumpling press” or very current models from the Bombardier TRAXX family, diesel locomotives of class V 100 East or the Czech Bardotka. These will be supplemented by a wide range of passenger and freight wagons, and as always authentic down to the last detail. Both the track system and popular models in colour variants will delight TT model railway fans next year, but new designs are also in the works. Especially in the eastern German states, there are many “middle gauge” enthusiasts. 1:120 scale model railways are small, fit on a table, which is what earned them the name TT – table top – but also allow for much more detail than, for example, the next smaller gauge, the N-gauge.
The TT- gauge was developed in North America in 1946 and is very widespread in Eastern Europe and the eastern states of Germany, but is not used much in Western Europe, North America and Asia. There is currently a noticeable trend with this gauge in the western states of Germany, Austria, the Netherlands, Belgium as well as in the Scandinavian countries.
Torsten Kühn and passion for model railways
The perfect match was possible because there was no competition between ROCO and the Kühn company. This means that ROCO can take over all production tools and equipment. These were produced over the years by Torsten Kühn and his company with the highest level of precision made possible by their expertise, and were continuously optimised.
In 1998, he started developing his first digital products, such as the locomotive decoder for model railways. The idea to produce his own model railway vehicles came in 2004. Two years later, the Kühn company delivered the first of six locomotives – class 110.1 of the DB and class 211 of the DR. The range was continuously expanded after that. In 2010, the company added its own track system. This made Kühn Modell & Digital a full-range TT-gauge supplier.
“Even as a child, I played with model railways and built a small system. However, after my studies and my first job, I noticed that I had less and less time for my hobby, my passion. So, after moving up to a management position in a larger, medium-sized company, I started thinking about becoming self-employed. Which I did, and today I can look back at well over 300 different models and carriage sets. This includes 160 different TT locomotives alone that we have brought to the market. ROCO is the perfect partner for rolling stock and track systems. The Kühn company will continue to produce digital products, because since their first delivery of locomotive decoders 25 years ago, this product range has expanded significantly. In the future, more resources will be available for the advancement of digital products, so Kühn customers can look forward to new, powerful products in this field,” Torsten Kühn says about his beginnings and future plans.