In a matter of days, the Japanese conglomerate Seiko will start selling the new Grand Seiko Sport Collection Spring Drive GMT Limited Edition (Ref. SBGE245G) hybrid-powered wristwatch. With the luxury gadget being limited to the Japanese domestic market, the watch will be a bit difficult to come by if you happen to live on the other side of the globe. Yet, the device is so beautiful, so impressive that is seems to be absolutely worth going into all the trouble to get one.
Japanese / Quartz
Already released as the Japanese Domestic Market (ah, that legendary 'JDM' abbreviation that's been rice-rocket freaks' and watch aficionados' darling for so many decades!) models, the new Seiko Prospex Diver Scuba Giugiaro Design Limited Edition (available as refs. SBEE001 & SBEE002) is an almost perfect re-issue of the wristwatch from the 1980s that had a great potential, but for some reason failed to become an icon of industrial design. Well, I can only welcome the Japanese brand's decision to give the collection a second chance, even as only a limited edition model.
The new Alpina Startimer Pilot automatic chronograph wristwatch (refs. AL-725B4S6, AL-725GR4S6 & AL-725N4S6) is available in three colors of its laconic, extremely sober dial and in two colors of the geunuine leather strap. It is a bit expensive, many people may (and probably will) call it boring, and it is clearly not a match to majors like IWC and Omega in terms of mojo and percieved value, yet the combination of a highly ergonomic design, reliable mechanism and acceptable price make it a very nice everyday watch for a person who can afford one.
In less than two months, the British watchmaking brand will start selling their new Christopher Ward C8 UTC Worldtimer timekeeper. Styled as a pilot's watch and featuring an appealing combination of a robust Swiss made movement with their new distinctive approach to design, the new timekeeper seems to be well worth the serious chunk of cash that the watchmaker plans to charge for it.
Officially revealed last January at SIHH 2016 show, the new IWC Top Gun Miramar Chronograph (ref. IW389002) automatic wristwatch brings everything you loved about the Miramar collection, albeit in a smaller package. With a touch oversized case crafted from dark grey scratch-resistant ceramic and a high-contrast, yet discreet dial layout, this new model looks like a very interesting choice for a person who always wanted a dressy pilot, but wasn't quite satisfied with earlier models and their Gargantuan proportions.
Scheduled to be presented soon at the upcoming Baselworld 2016 trade show, the new Omega Speedmaster Moonphase Chronograph Master Chronometer (ref. 304.33.44.52.03.001) looks like one of the most attractive takes on the Swiss brand's legendary "moon watch." Combining striking exterior with an advanced, anti-magnetically shielded movement, the device tries really hard to be worth every single dollar that the Swiss watchmaker wants you to spend on it.
The Glashutte Original Senator Observer (ref. 100-14-07-02-30) brings you a very impressive mix of a perfect self-winding mechanism, a dial that is easy to read in any circumstances, and a nicely sculpted body inherited from an earlier iteration of the watch, all seasoned with that attention to even most minuscule details that only German watchmakers seem to exhibit regardless of the price tag that comes with their timekeepers.
The new Oris Big Crown ProPilot Calibre 111 (ref. 01 111 7711 4163-Set 5 22 14FC), as the name implies, is powered by the Swiss brand's new Caliber 111 hand-wound movement. Developed and built on their own premises, the beautiful mechanism not only makes this new timekeeper even more exclusive, but also shows quite clearly that Oris has enough resources to make a wonderful caliber. Their new Cal. 111 is an in-house mechanism that, at least in terms of functionality and efficiency, rivals those recently introduced by a lot more established watchmaking houses.
Quartz / Swiss
The new Alpina Seastrong Diver 300 Chronograph Big Date wristwatch expands the Swiss brand's line of affordable diving companions with yet another product. Featuring a reliable and accurate quartz mechanism packed into a visually attractive, nicely sculpted stainless steel body, the timepiece looks like a perfect "first real Swiss watch" choice for a young customer who still can't afford buying "a real thing" be it a member of the same collection powered by a more expensive mechanical movement or something of an entirely different league like, say, an Omega Seamaster or a Breitling Superocean.
As defiantly eclectic as it is, the new Cuervo y Sobrinos Historiador Vuelo still makes quite a strong impression with its deliberately oversized stainless steel body and a dial that could make your eyes bleed if only it wasn't matched so convincingly well to the energetic shape of the case. Clearly not designed according to the book that most Swiss-based watchmakers seem to live by, this new wristwatch may be a timekeeper of choice for a person who looks for something entirely different.