Sorry for a week delay. Here is the summary from the monthly Kato sales meeting held on July 15.
This time, there were not many hot topics and ended up quite simple.
Feel free to contact us for those item you are interested.
Message from Mr. Kato
- Iida line variants will be available by end of July.
- Factory working hard to ship Kato 20-825 (Turntable extension track which is now out of market).
- Planning to do re-run of some of steam locomotives as realized turntable stimulating demand for steam locomotive but having resource issue as KATO already announced new American prototype "FEF" and production resource has to be assigned to it as well.
- E233-6000 Yokohama line slipped to August.
- Kato 10-1223 (E7 add-on set B) was sold out before but additional shipment done by shifting export stock and other arrangement.
New Product Information
Models displayed at sales meeting
1. 3013-2 ED76-0 Late model JR Kyushu
2. Series 14 sleeper express "Sakura"
3. 10-1224 Series 233-6000 Yokohama Line
Same model already released from Tomix. How do you find difference?
4. 156-0954 AMTRAK Superliner II Transition
Sorry, not a Japanese prototype.
5. Eidan Series 6000
More prototype is ready now. Destination set to Abiko.
Also got image for temporary head/tail light on car #5 and #6. Unfortunately, they will not work actually.
6. ED75-1000 1st type
7. 10-1120 Series 485 first type "HIBARI"
Unique KURO481 is shown.
8. 10-1235 Express coach "HAKKODA"
This car is WASAFU8000. Tail lights on guard's van end will work on actual product. We will having some Assy parts from KATO in case you need only WASAFU8000.
9. 3069-1 EF57-1
Unique design that pantograph is placed close to each other on center of roof.
10.10-1226 Iida Line KUMOHA53-000 + KUHA47-153
11. 10-1225 Iida Line KUMOHA42 + KUHAYUNI56 (3 car set)
12. Storage Box
Multi-purpose storage box. Available in two different design. One is KATO EF65, which the front face is displayed at KATO factory at Tsurugashima, Saitama. The other is Keikyu Type 230, which is the actual train is placed in front of Hobby Center Kato. This box can also be used as chair (max. weight is 80kg). 2,000 Yen each. Please let me know if you like them.
Request/Update from other retailers
- Some retailer suggested to change packaging of Unitrack product to reduce number of pieces to half like Tomix. But the response was prettey negative. The reason is that changing packaging will make the item with higher price. Also request raised Kato to release S248 track with pack of 10 like Tomix.
- E7 is selling quite well. Kato E7 is selling more than Tomix (this is same at ModelTrainPlus).
- Some retailer wants interior lights in bulk like 50 or more with no packaging. Mr. Kato might consider changing existing line-up. This model actually exists already but not much cost-effective and KATO will think something better.
- It is nice to have a mechanism to easily add motor unit to enhance like E7. Kato E7 full 12 car formation only comes with 1 motor and some customer want 2nd motor. There should be an easy upgrade option for adding secondary motor unit.
Other favor for re-run/ new product
- Series 115 Shonan Color
- Eidan 6000 with air conditioner model
- Kashima Rinkai Type 6000 "Girls und Panzer"
- Series E351
From ModelTrainPlus, raised following requet/item/question.
- Orient Express Pullman diner car having some yellowish finish on part of side of the car.
- Requested to re-run for M250 Super rail cargo
As Kato is busy with event during summer season, sales meeting for August will not be held. Next meeting will be on September.