First revealed in its current form in 2011 (its signature shape, however, was introduced in 2002) and slightly refreshed in all the right places back in December 2012, the Sea Hawk family has been expanded with a new variation. Called Girard-Perregaux Sea Hawk Cobalt Blue and available either on a blue rubber strap (ref. 49960-19-431-FK4A) or a bit less flashy, but a lot more practical stainless steel bracelet (ref. 49960-19-431-11A), the diver makes an even stronger impression. In fact, it radiates such a strong presence that you would probably need to wear Dr. Freeman’s hazmat suit just to walk into your nearest Girard-Perregaux boutique to see the watch in person.
What you don’t need is a microscope to tell the gorgeous Sea Hawk from every other diver with the great majority of them based on different versions of either the iconic Rolex Submariner or the legen… wait for it… dary Omega Seamaster. Although still struggling to earn the status of a living legend, the collection is nevertheless distinct from the rest of the pack with its unique styling language and modern approach to industrial design.
Deliberately massive and bulky, the watch still doesn’t look overweight. Yes, it is huge, but it is also ripped like Arnold Schwarzenegger or Wladimir Klitschko at the peak of their form. There is also a point behind its massiveness: the timekeeper’s bezel and the setting crown are designed not only to impress unsuspecting customers but to be easily operated even by a gloved hand: a must for a watch, which is rated to withstand an impressive pressure of whole 100ATM (1000 meters).
The same goes for the elements of the dial: the hands and the hour markers are large enough to accommodate lots of Superluminova to make the watch more readable deep underwater. Frankly, I doubt that any of these timekeepers will ever see anything more breathtaking than a swimming pool (it will probably be just too expensive to be used as a tool watch by anybody but James Bond, and Mr. Bond currently prefers Omegas to any other brand, Swiss or Japanese), but it is a pleasure to know that in case of an emergency you won’t have to worry about your timekeeper’s mechanism being ruined by saltwater.
As usual, Girard-Perregaux equips their timekeepers with their own in-house movement. In this particular instance, it is caliber PG03300-0074: a version of their tractor caliber equipped with an add-on module that expands the gadget’s functionality with a power reserve indicator. You don’t want to find yourself deep underwater with a suddenly stopped diving watch just because at some moment in time you forgot to wind the spring, do you?
On the other hand, the GP03300-based caliber that powers this watch is not only robust and reliable but is also equipped with an efficient system of winding so, given that your watch didn’t completely run out of juice in your drawer, it will probably start getting its power back as soon as you put it on your wrist, so the nightmare mentioned above is highly unlikely.
I would even dare say that a self-winding watch doesn’t need a power reserve indicator, although having one is nice.
Build quality: 5/5
Value for money: 4.5/5
Girard-Perregaux Sea Hawk Cobalt Blue (49960-19-431-FK4A & 49960-19-431-11A) specification
Price: €9000 (MSRP)
Movement: Automatic, Caliber PG03300-0074, 25.60 mm, in-house, Swiss Made
Number of jewels: 27
Movement frequency: 28,800 vph
Power reserve: 46 hours
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, date, power reserve
Case: Stainless steel
Bezel shape: Round
Size: 44.00 mm
Dial: Cobalt Blue
Hour markers: Luminous
Water resistance: 1000 meters
Strap: Blue rubber strap on stainless steel buckle (FK4A) / Steel bracelet on steel folding buckle (11A)
Crystal: Sapphire, antireflective