I originally ordered "one of whatever you are producing" back when Ixion first announced themselves in 2007 - and according to Lindsay O'Reilly, I was their first order! As time progressed they announced that "whatever" was going to be the Manor - in three versions of green and a limited run of BR black. I picked the black one as it was more suitable for my time period of the 1950's than the other options.
As time further progressed, the limited aspect of the black one was limited only to it being black - 300 of each (GWR shirt button, GWR letters, BR early crest black and BR late crest lined green) were to be produced.
Disaster struck with the initial release being 8% too large. Something back in the 1970's which wouldn't have been a problem was a huge issue in the more discerning noughties. Ixion did a very brave thing and cancelled half the production run and recalled the half which had been released. 18 months later (or thereabouts) the new ones are here, and they are beauties.
If you are a fan of the GWR and model N gauge then you have to have one of these - I am only half of that and have two. Both are excellent runners and haulers - I have had them running on the Darling Daughters trainset with an eclectic rake behind including 7 Dapol light bar ready Collett coaches, 6 Farish Staniers, 4 Farish Mk 2's, 2 Bachmann PRR Coaches from the 1970's, 3 Farish seacows and a couple of coaches of indeterminate parentage.
A YouTube video shows a Engineering Prototype running on Ben Lawson's Sturminister Newton layout hauling 35 coaches. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WyyBfEBPALI
Purchase is by mail order only - and due to exchange rate fluctuations annoyingly only from Ixion for those living Down Under. Dapol (www.dapol.co.uk) have the exclusive sales in the Northern Hemisphere and the prices are on the websites.