Corum broadens its nautically themed Admiral collection with the watchmaker’s new three-dimensional patterned dial, previously found only on the collection’s 38mm and 45mm cases. Corum now places its Grenadier fendu dial, designed in house in La Chaux-de-Fonds in 2019, on new models within the Admiral 42 Automatic collection.
The twelve-sided (dodecagonal) Admiral, with its colorful sailing flags, was first seen in 1980. Originally a square-cased watch when it debuted in 1960, Admiral has since 1980 been offered in myriad versions, including those displaying time-only, as a chronograph and even hosting complications.
The six new Admiral 42 watches boast two dial colors (blue and black), with each dial color offered in three models: stainless steel case and bracelet, a stainless steel case with matching alligator leather strap and a stainless steel case with a rose gold bezel and crown, matching alligator leather strap with triple folding clasp.
The Admiral’s signature pennants line the outer chapter flange in minimalist outline form alongside minute indexes. Corum finishes the dial with applied hour markers and white SuperLuminova-coated Dauphine skeletonized hands, a date window and a small seconds subdial.
And finally, Corum powers the Admiral 42 Automatic with the CO 395 caliber, visible through a sapphire screwed-in caseback. Prices: $4,600 (steel) and $7,600 (with rose gold bezel).
Porsche Design echoes its dashboard clock with a set of chronometers.
To complement the Sport Chrono Porsche Design clock designed for Porsche Panarama and the Porsche Taycan car interior, Porsche Design in the past year introduced a matching the Sport Chrono wristwatch collection.
The line, while not brand new, is impressive. It includes three models that closely match the automotive clock, complete with a small seconds subdial (above), plus one additional model boasting a flyback chronograph.
As with the clock, the operative word is chrono – for chronometer. While only one of the two models is a chronograph, both are officially certified COSC chronometers, with all the enhanced precision that certificate confers.
With its small seconds subdial at six o’clock as on the dashboard timer, the three-hand Sport Chrono Subsecond is 42mm titanium watch offered with either a black, blue or brown dial. Each dial comes with a color-matched rubber strap.
Inside these watches Porsche Design fits its estimable in-house developed Porsche Design caliber WERK 03.200.
While the Sub Second chronometer models feature closed case backs, the chronograph model boasts a clear sapphire case back. This wise choice offers a clear view of Porsche Design’s eye-catching caliber WERK 01.100, with its Porsche-centric P-Icon design.
Other classic Porsche Design features include an anti-reflective sapphire crystal, a leather strap made from Porsche interior leather and a titanium folding clasp with safety push buttons.
Prices: $4,750 (Sport Chrono Subsecond) and $6,150 (automatic chronograph).
Gucci is celebrating its centenary with the launch of a high watchmaking collection, ramped up by the introduction of its first movement by parent company Kering. The in-house automatic Caliber GG727.25 makes its debut in the Gucci 25H, an ultra-slim timepiece collection available in stainless steel or precious metal.
The Paris-based Kering, which also claims Ulysse Nardin and Girard-Perregaux among its portfolio of luxury brands, designed and developed the movement, which is a product of Kering’s own manufacture in La Chaux-de-Fonds. And at just 3.70mm thick, the new movement is the perfect pairing for the 25H’s own slender profile, measuring a mere 7.2mm.
Two tourbillon versions are also part of the new collection, and their cases measure slightly thicker, at 8mm. The self-winding 24-jewel movement, visible through the caseback, features sixty hours of power reserve, and it runs at 21,600 bph, or 3Hz.
Steel to platinum
The 40mm timepiece, designed by Gucci creative director Alessandro Michele, seamlessly morphs from sporty status in steel to a more formal designation when dressed in yellow gold or platinum, as in the tourbillon versions. The minimalist dial of the 25H marks the hours with simple indices, while skeletonized hands—dotted with luminescence—traverse the satin-brushed lined décor.
Here, too, the movement is given its proper due, with GG727.25 prominently displayed front and center, along with Gucci’s double-G logo at 12 o’clock.
The tourbillon variations are marked GG727.25.T. Not so incidentally, even the movement identifications have significance: Michele considers the numerical designation talismanic.
The watch’s precision-crafted bezel obscures the crown, making it nearly invisible, and this unique architecture lends a seamless quality to the overall design, while also enhancing the fit. The five-link bracelet is both comfortable and handsome, and augments Gucci’s goal of making the timepiece “like a second skin on the wrist.”
The Gucci 25H includes several variations. The tourbillon in yellow gold with and an 18-karat bracelet is priced at $129,000, while the tourbillon in platinum with a platinum bracelet is $183,000. The 25H automatic in stainless steel with a steel bracelet is priced at $9,500; the stainless steel version with a diamond-set bezel is $12,200.
The impressive new Ball Watch Engineer Hydrocarbon AeroGMT Sled Driver, with its triple timezone displays and seriously strong anti-shock architecture, pays homage to retired U.S. Air Force Pilot Major Brian Shul, one of only ninety-two pilots to fly the SR-71 Blackbird. Ball named the watch after a nickname pilots gave to the jet fighter: the Sled.
The new watch’s blue and black bezel is striking, especially as it frames the black dial and the four large hands that point out the time in up to three different zones. But at night, the display really shines, with cockpit-level multi-hue marker and hand illumination.
In the dark, one look at the aviator-inspired dial unveils hour indexes and main hands glowing, thanks to Ball’s trademark H3 gas tubes, here in yellow.Ball has doubled the glass tubes at the 3 o’clock, 6 o’clock and 9 o’clock markers while the 12 o’clock index boasts a pair of bright orange gas tubes. Any search for the second time zone lands on the glowing GMT hand, which is differentiated with a green gas tube.
But perhaps, the star of the low-light display is the micro-gas illuminated bezel, with its large green 24-hour Arabic numerals and markers. This scratch-resistant, sapphire-coated bidirectional 24-hour rotating bezel serves as a third timezone. It allows a pilot (or frequent traveler) to use the GMT hand to track home city time, while the central hour and minute hands remain set to the newer local time.
Of course, the dial also recalls Brian Shul directly with an illuminated outline of the SR-71 fighter jet at 6 o’clock, just below the words “SLED DRIVER” and Shul’s signature. More personalization is evident on the back, which Ball engraves with the Mach 3+ insignia emblem, as worn by all qualified SR-71 Blackbird crewmembers.
Inside Ball places its ETA-based Ball RR1201-C automatic movement, which is certified by the Official Swiss Chronometer Testing Institute (COSC). And Ball protects the movement with an unusually tough shock and magnetic resistance. The AeroGMT Sled Driver absorbs impacts up to 7,500Gs and boasts anti-magnetic resistance of 4,800 A/m.
Ball also equips the 42mm steel Engineer Hydrocarbon AeroGMT Sled Driver with an extendable triple-folding buckle or an alternative rubber strap, both customized to fit over a pilot’s jacket or sleeve. The new watch is a limited edition of 1,990 pieces in reference to 1990, when four speed records were established on the final flight of the SR-71 Blackbird in U.S. Air Force service.Price: $3,499.
Movement: Automatic ETA-based caliber BALL RR1201-C, Chronometer certified by COSC.
Dial and Functions: 44 micro gas tubes on hour, minute, second, second time zone hands, dial and bezel, luminous three time zone indication.
Case: 42mm by 13.85mm steel, bidirectional rotating curved sapphire bezel with micro gas tubes, Shock resistant to 7,500Gs, anti-magnetic to 4,800A/m, water resistant to 100 meters, titanium case back, anti-reflective sapphire crystal, patented crown protection system.
Bracelet: Tapered stainless steel bracelet with patented folding buckle & extension system or rubber strap with pin buckle.
Citizen has updated and expanded its Series 8 collection, a popularly priced set of sporty steel watches previously sold only in Japan, and will offer them in the U.S. market.
With two models soon to be available in North America, Series 8 watches boast 40mm steel cases, strong anti-magnetic properties, three-hands with date and updated automatic movements. Alongside The Citizen, a 40mm steel watch set with Citizen’s impressive new automatic Caliber 0200, the Series 8 marks Citizen’s strongest entry into the U.S. mechanical sport watch market in many years.
While Citizen has a long history as a manufacturer of mechanical movements, the company in recent years has focused much of its marketing and distribution efforts on its light-powered Eco-Drive technology. For U.S. buyers, Citizen’s Miyota mechanical movements are more likely found powering watches made elsewhere than within Citizen’s current U.S. lineup. For instance, Bulova, owned by Citizen, and many independent bands utilize Citizen-manufactured automatic movements.
Look for Citizen to draw new attention to its own extensive history as a manufacturer of mechanical watches as it launches Series 8 and The Citizen within the United States.
Citizen will offer two models within Series 8 this fall. One, the 870 Mechanical, is a sporty round watch with a two-part bezel, which sets it apart from the second model, the 831 Mechanical, which features an octagonal case and one-piece bezel.
The 870’s case is finished using both hairline and mirror finishes, and its dial is set with larger hands and markers than the 831 models. As a result, it’s the cleanest of the new Series 8 designs, with a focus on high visibility and casual sportiness, especially with its steel bracelet integrated directly into the steel case.
The automatic Citizen Caliber 0950 that powers this model offers the stronger specifications of the two Series 8 movements. It is rated to -5 /+10 seconds per day, and will operate for fifty hours on a full wind. Look for the 870 with either a black or a white dial.
The 831 Mechanical offers a somewhat thinner octagonal case with crown protector, and a blue-dialed option.
The latter, in a gold-tone steel case, arrives on a more leisurely blue calf leather strap. The automatic Citizen Caliber 9051 that powers this model is rated to -10 /+20 seconds per day, and will operate for forty-two hours on a full wind. Both watches are rated water resistant to 100 meters.
The 830 Mechanical
A third Series 8 model, the 830 Mechanical, is not scheduled to be offered by Citizen in the United States. This model adds a more complex dial to the same octagonal case used by the 831. It features a new sandwich-style dial with mother-of-pearl, mesh and metal layers.
If the 830 appeals to your sense of style, you’ll have to search your overseas sources to purchase one. Thus far, the Citizen’s U.S. division has announced that it will only bring the Model 831 and 870 to the domestic U.S. market.
Citizen notes that both the movements in the Series 8 offerings have been upgraded recently to provide enhanced magnetic resistance, and both are significantly thinner than earlier versions, even with the anti-magnetic upgrade.
Citizen explains “the watches also have enhanced magnetic resistance essential for our modern digital lives by providing protection against magnetic fields generated by smartphones, tablets, and other devices that can affect the accuracy of the watch.”
Prices: $1,500 (870 Mechanical), $1,000 (831 Mechanical) and $950 (831 Mechanical, with gold-tone case and blue leather strap). Citizen will make the Series 8 models available this fall.