Officially presented at Baselworld 2011 show -an industry even that is, unlike the revered SIHH, isn’t reserved exclusively to Swiss-based manufacturers and allows international brands to show their most outstanding timekeepers to a lot wider audience-, the new Mühle Glashütte Marinus GMT (ref. M1-28-53-KB) diver offers the right combination of useful water resistance rating of 30 ATM together with a 24-hour second time zone indication courtesy of a Swiss-made automatic movement. All of that at an affordable price.
The GMT display here is powered by a modified to higher specs ETA 2893-2 automatic movement that features a bespoke “woodpecker neck” regulation and is equipped with a branded Muehle winding rotor that features the signature Glashuette solar grinding. The choice of caliber is surprising here since many competing watchmaking specialists often use something as mundane as an ETA 2824-2 three-hander (or even its Sellita-made clone) with a GMT add-on module slapped atop of it and call it a day.
While less expensive (for the brand selling you the watch, not for you,) the “hybrid” movement is normally less dependable, less efficient, and more expensive to keep in good condition for obvious reasons. Also, while I am not sure whether the ETA 2893-2 (and, of course, the ETA 2892 that it is based on) can be rightfully called a “next-generation” movement, it is certainly newer than the 2824 family incorporating at least 20 years of extra expertise with lots of rough parts being smoothed out. So, the Caliber 2893 is superior to 2824.
The movement is also turned 30 degrees clockwise so that the setting crown is now placed at 4 o’clock, which makes the Marinus GMT more comfortable to wear and, from my experience with watches designed this way, a bit easier to operate: I find the position of hands more natural and ergonomic.
The second time zone function is indicated with a smaller hour hand that features a bright red arrow-shaped tip: the design that we have seen thousands of times before that, while not as convenient on some “true” worldtimers, gets the job done in a reliable and efficient way. As usual for this type of watches, the second time zone features a military-style 24-hour scale which is printed on the bidirectional rotating bezel and doubled with a white ring on the main dial.
While the main time zone is easily legible thanks to a set of bold Arabic numerals and large hour markers, all of them printed in white Superluminova, the secondary time-zone is not that stellar: instead of the luminous compound used on the dial, the numerals on the bezel are simply printed with paint and there is nothing more than a glowing dot at “00” hours essentially turning the GMT watch into a simple three-hander at night.
Well, at least the huge hour and minutes hand look great on the matte black dial (I only wonder why did they put so few lume on them.)
According to the German company, the Marinus GMT will be available both on a rubber strap (pictured) and on a stainless steel bracelet with the pricing set at €1690 and €1830 respectively.
Photos: Nautische Instrumente Mühle Glashütte / UhrForum
Muehle Glashuette Marinus GMT (ref. M1-28-53-KB) specification
Price: €1690 / €1830 (MSRP)
Movement: Automatic, Caliber ETA 2893-2, upgraded with woodpecker neck regulation, Swiss Made
Movement decoration: Muehle-rotor with Glashuette solar grinding
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, date, GMT, stop-seconds and quickset date mechanism
Power reserve: 42 hours
Case: Stainless steel
Size: 42.20 mm
Case height: 12.20 mm
Water resistance: 300 meters
Strap: Rubber or stainless steel bracelet with extension and security folding clasp made of stainless steel; folding clasp with safety buckle in stainless steel
Crystal: Sapphire, antireflective, 2.50 mm thick