Created by the famous Swiss graphic designer Ruedi Külling who is mostly known for his award-wining posters and visual advertising materials -the iconic series of ads for Bic, the French maker of ballpoint pens, is, perhaps, the most known among his numerous works- the new Xemex Piccadilly Chronograph Reserve ALL BLACK automatic timepiece is as simple in its functionality as it is elegant in its simplicity.
As you may have already noticed, the watch is designed around numerous circles: a characteristic approach for the Swiss-based master designer.
Its round body, which is made of black galvanized steel, houses a dial that nests not the usual three, but whole four circular-shaped sub-dials that are further emphasized by a circle that serves as a base for the central chronograph seconds hand, as well by a date aperture of the same shape. The daringly rectangular hour and minute hands serve as a pair of accents sending an even stronger visual message while playing nicely with square-shaped hour markers.
Its screw-down crown that, too, is accented by a pair of rectangular chronograph push-pieces guarantees water resistance of up to 50 meters. The value, while looking impressive, is actually not that great meaning that you can safely wash your hands wearing the watch but should avoid swimming or diving, which is a pity for a deliberately sporty-looking timekeeper.
Returning to the dial, which is clearly a dish of the day here, I feel obliged to also make a note that the two chronograph sub-dials at 12 and 6 o’clock (a 12-hour and a 30-minute totalizer respectively) are well-balanced with a small seconds counter at 9 o’clock and a power reserve indicator at 3 o’clock.
Although the tiny date indicator, which is also round, is a little off-balance there at four o’clock, the watch’s olive-gray dial still leaves strong impression being both highly legible and clear.
The whole composition is powered by the well-known Soprod SO 7750 automatic movement, which is in essence a modified ETA Valjoux 7750 industry work horse with an added power reserve indicator.
The only thing that I don’t like about this timekeeper is its black rubber band, which is delivered black galvanized steel folding clasp.
The first of all, rubber can be allergenic to some making the skin go itchy and flaky. The allergy doesn’t always show itself right away (which is good, nobody wants to go into anaphylactic shock just wearing the watch once,) but unfolds slowly, sometimes having months to develop.
The other thing is that rubber is not very comfortably in hot weather (that’s why it is usually reserved for diving watches) and can be deformed if left under direct sun light.
As to the rest, the watch looks almost perfect, if not its sky-high price if $10,000.
Xemex Piccadilly Chronograph Reserve ALL BLACK watch specification :
Price range: about $10,000
Movement: Caliber Soprod SO 7750 (base ETA Valjoux 7750,) Swiss Made
Complications: Date, timer
Power reserve: 42 hours
Case material: Galvanized steel
Case diameter: 40.00 mm
Case height: No data
Dial: Special Xemex color combination olive-grey matt, polished zones
Water resistance: 50 meters
Strap: Black rubber with stainless steel clasp
Crystal: Sapphire crystal