At Watches & Wonders 2022 earlier this month, Grand Seiko introduced five sport models in its Evolution 9 collection. And echoing many of the other high-end watchmakers at the show, Grand Seiko also focused its debuts on titanium-cased designs.
(Grand Seiko also debuted its first mechanical complication watch, the Kodo Constant-force Tourbillon, which we’ll discuss in a future post).
But unlike all other watchmakers, Grand Seiko is able to offer a level of precision rare for any pure mechanical offering thanks to its proprietary Spring Drive movement, a mechanical-electronic hybrid built and finished to high watchmaking standards.
Within its relatively new Evolution 9 collection, Grand Seiko adds two GMT models (SBGE283 and SBGE285), two Chronograph GMT models (SBGC249, a blue-dialed 15th Anniversary Limited Edition, and SBGC251), and a 200-meter dive watch with caliber 9RA5 (SLGA015), a movement with an impressive five-day power reserve. All these titanium-cased watches offer screw-down crowns and a strong anti-magnetic resistance to 4,800 A/m.
For the debuts, Grand Seiko has refined its cases as well as various dial details. All the new models benefit from wider lugs and thicker bracelets. Also note the collection’s bolder hands that point to a new font along the bezel, notably on the GMT models. In addition, Grand Seiko now coats all its hands and indexes with more Lumibrite than we’ve seen previously. In addition, crown guards are somewhat smoother than on earlier sports models.
Spring Drive GMT
These two 41mm debuts (above) feature highly textured pattern dials in either black (SBGE283) or light gray (SBGE285). Both offer a box-shaped sapphire crystal, a 72-hour power reserve and are powered by Spring Drive Caliber 9R66, which offers incredible precision of plus or minus one second per day. Price: $8,400, and available in August.
The first of the two new 45.3mm Evolution 9 chronographs features a blue dial and offers a higher rate of accuracy than the already phenomenal one-second per day. This Grand Seiko Spring Drive Chronograph 15th anniversary edition (SBGC249, above) is adjusted to achieve an enhanced accuracy rate of just half-a-second per day, (or plus or minus 10 seconds per month) and is offered as a limited edition of 700. In addition to the 12-hour chronograph, the watch also features a rotating bezel and a GMT hand. Price: $12,400.
The black-dialed version (SBGC251, below) delivers the standard high accuracy of 1-second per day (±15 seconds per month) and otherwise offers the same design and specifications as the limited edition. Price: $11,400.
Dark Dive Watch
Finally, Grand Seiko adds an impressive new 200m diver’s watch (SLGA015) to the Evolution 9 collection. As is often the case at Grand Seiko, the watch’s textured black dial arrives on your wrist already wrapped up with an inspiring origin story.
Inspired by the Kuroshio Current, also known as the Black Stream, the dial echoes the darkness visible in the waters that flow northwards past Japan towards the North Pacific. The Black Stream’s darkness inspired Grand Seiko’s artisans to create the new watch’s particularly evocative dial.
Powered by Spring Drive Caliber 9RA5, the new 43.8mm by 13.8mm titanium Black Stream dive watch offers an accuracy rate of ±10 seconds per month and a five-day power reserve.
The diver’s hands are among the boldest we’ve seen on a Grand Seiko dial, and this bezel among the most robust. In fact, Grand Seiko has forged the bezel’s inside from ceramic to reduce the possibility of scratching. Price: $11,600 and available in August.