Set to be officially presented in later this month during the Baselworld 2013 trade show, this new Alpina Sailing Yachttimer Countdown (ref. AL-880LBG4V6) automatic wrist watch builds on the lessons learned after the introduction of their earlier Extreme 40 Sailing Regatta Timer that was first revealed last year. Although powered by the same self-winding movement and sporting the same body, the new version of the watch offers a completely different (and quite attractive, too) dial layout.
While the previous iteration of the watch featured a very simple dial with five (rather awkward-looking) circular apertures placed in its upper half, the new timekeeper offers a lot more colorful face with its arc-shaped countdown window starting at 12 o’clock and going all the way to 4 hours.
Behind it is the same rotating disk of the timer that now shows bold 1-2-3-4 numbers that are followed by huge START inscription on a bright orange fluorescent background. It is interesting that styling of the regatta timer is visually similar to that on the earlier Regatta2 chronograph wristwatch that is based on a Valjoux 7750 chronograph of which the Sellita-based mechanism that animates this piece is a clone. Sorry, I wasn’t able to dig any information regarding whether Alpina has bought the design or simply developed its own complication module, which is more likely since the design is not that complex after all.
The rest of the dial is almost fully monochromatic, but, thanks to a fat, bright red luminous seconds hand, which is matched in color by the “60” numeral on the chapter ring, also looks quite entertaining. It is also quite easy to read both in broad daylight and in darkness when its SuperLuminova-coated hands, numerals and hour markers start to glow.
According to the official press release, the watch is powered by the same AL-880 automatic movement. Being a slightly modified version of the Sellita SW5000 ebauche, this is basically a normal chronograph caliber that features 46 hours of guaranteed power reserve and beats at a standard frequency of 28,800 vph.
The movement is not very large, so, even despite the Yachttimer’s claimed water resistance rating of 300 meters, its 44 mm body is quite thin measuring less than 12 millimeters in height.
Although the watch will be issued as a “limited edition” model, the Swiss-based company plans to make as many as 8888 of them, so getting one will not be particularly difficult.
At this time, Alpina sells the ref. AL-880LBG4V6 model on a black rubber band for a fairly impressive price of CHF 3150.
Alpina Sailing Yachttimer Countdown (ref. AL-880LBG4V6) Automatic watch specification
Price: CHF 3150 (MSRP, ref. AL-880LBG4V6)
Movement: Automatic, caliber AL-880 (base Sellita SW500), Swiss Made
Number of jewels: No data
Movement frequency: 28,800 vph
Power reserve: 42 hours
Movement decoration: Black PVD oscillating weight
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds; Yachttimer countdown timer
Case material: Stainless steel
Bezel material: Sapphire
Crown material: Matches case
Case shape: Cushion
Bezel shape: Round
Case size: 44.00 mm
Case height: No data
Lug width: No data
Hour markers: Luminous (SuperLuminova)
Hands: Luminous (SuperLuminova)
Water resistance: 300 meters
Strap: Black rubber strap or steel mesh bracelet
Case back: Transparent