Ron-I may be a glass half full kind of person and possibly an optimist!
First of all in 1954 we still had rationing, so a commercial decision then would have been much braver one to make than today with as you imply 60+ years of technology advancements-as mentioned before in this thread 3D printing could play a part in any possible future developments.
As mentioned above 009 has recently become a similar RTR scale and unless you were able to build your own locos and stock, you would have been in a much the same situation.
Similar but not identical, but hasn't more than one major manufacturer taken the plunge?
Edited by MartinWales, 26 January 2015 - 16:18 .