In the early nineties, along with Lufthansa German Airlines, Herpa developed a series of extremely high quality aircraftmodels in 1/200 scale. It was the wish of Lufthansa to create a range of truly authentic precision models, the like of which has never been seen before. Considerable effort and resources were required to meet this goal and the the Airbus A300-600 model alone required over 2,000 working hours to design, with a further 6,000 hours to construct the moulds. The model is made from a total of 80 pieces, imprinted 125 times, and embossed 22 times during the manufacturing process.
The flagship of the Modell Edition range is the Boeing 747-400 which was the first model in the series to be produced with the use Computer Aided Design (CAD). The biggest challenge for the model makers of the Boeing 747 was the reproduction of the complex undercarriage. Tiny coil springs, just 1.4mm long, press down the rear tyres of each landing gear giving them a trailing appearance, just like on the real thing!
All models carry an astonishing amount of detail from navigation lights and arials to the various markings. To faithfully reproduce the metal surfaces of the real thing, genuine metal foil was used. The initial stage turbine blades in engines turn. Wheels which have rubber tyres also turn.
Production of this series was kept to three variants of each aircraft type, each bearing a different registration and city name, and limited to 5000 models of each. There was however, one later addition to the Boeing 737 range, D-ABXT 'Reutlingen', limited to 2000 pieces, which sported the newer 'Express' livery. More recently, there has also been an additional Boeing 747-400 to the range, which was a special edition model to promote the 2000 Hannover Expo. Each Model is imprinted with a serial number which is duplicated on a certificate of authenticity. All models, apart from the Expo Boeing 747, are now sold out.
At the end of the Nineties, Herpa decided to re-utilize the moulds which were originally designed to produce the 'Lufthansa Modell Edition' range. A new range was launched under the title 'Premium Series'. In 2000, four new models were released, each representing aircraft from different Airlines. Four further models (Edition 2) have been announced for 2001. Models in this series are limited to 1000 pieces of each.