The latest slew of dive watches are equally suited for the depths of the ocean or an urban cityscape.
ART DIRECTION: LEE KUAN LENG
Inspired by the 1968 Memovox Polaris, the Polaris Date (pictured above) highlights its enduring appeal with a new model in chic deep green. Retaining the subtle vintage touches with a vanilla luminescent coating, the lacquered, double-gradient dial with multiple textured finishes provides perfect legibility without any compromise in aesthetics. From the inner bezel ring to the minute track, a mix of opaline, grained and sunrayed surfaces clearly defines each key dial segment. Water-resistant to 200m, the case remains subtle, thanks to its satin- finished surfaces with polished chamfers on the lugs and a narrow bezel. This allows the dial to be the focus, showcased by the glass-box crystal that recalls the Plexiglas dial crystals of mid-century watches. The model comes with a green rubber strap that is equipped with a quick-change system for maximum versatility. The 42mm timepiece is powered by the latest-generation automatic mechanical Jaeger-LeCoultre Calibre 899AB with 70 hours of power reserve.
Where features are concerned, the EZM 13.1 is one of the most traditional yet technically advanced diving chronographs. The manufacture knows exactly what matters to a diver and this includes outstanding readability. To enable the elapsed times to be read quickly and intuitively, the 41mm EZM 13.1 features a 60-minute counter at 6 o’clock instead of the traditional 30-minute counter. This is distinguished by an optimised dial design in which the Arabic numerals have been omitted. For the highest levels of mechanical stability and durability against external influences, the EZM 13.1 is equipped with a technology package consisting of Magnetic Field Protection; Ar-Dehumidifying Technology to prevent fogging of the crystal from sudden cold; and Temperature Resistance Technology. Powered by the SINN self-winding chronograph movement SZ02, the watch has a crown placed on the left side of the case to prevent pressure on the back of the wearer’s left hand. The watch also is made to be functionally reliable in temperatures ranging from -45 deg C to 80 deg C. The independent classification company DNV verifies and certifies the 500m water resistance and pressure resistance of the EZM 13.1, as well as its functionality in accordance with European diving equipment standards.
No longer strictly a dive watch, wearers can surf, swim or hit the beach bar in the newly redesigned SuperOcean collection of shock-, sand- and saltwater-resistant watches. Available in four sizes – 36, 42, 44 and 46mm – the range now features colourful dials paired with three case metals of steel, steel-gold or bronze. The two strap options – one in sporty rubber and the other a metal bracelet – feature a folding clasp that allows for adjustments of up to 15mm for easy wear over a rash guard or dive suit. The 300m water-resistant watches flaunt broad hands and indexes coated in Super-LumiNova for excellent readability underwater, while a scratch-proof ceramic-inlayed bezel guarantees it will never wear or fade. There’s something for everyone in this collection, including this Superocean Automatic 42 Kelly Slater Limited Edition pictured here. Co-designed with the surf champion and limited to 1,000 pieces, the model features a bright orange dial and military-green rubber strap. All watches are equipped with the automatic Breitling Calibre 17 with a 38-hour power reserve.
The manufacture presents two new interpretations of its Fifty Fathoms Bathyscaphe Quantième Complet, comprising a red gold version with a blue-gradient dial and, as seen here, a titanium version with an anthracite dial. Combining sporty looks with day of the week, month and date indications, the model reinforces the principle of everyday utility, which gave rise to the first Bathyscaphe. The information on the dial is complemented by a moonphase in a large window at 6 o’clock. As expected, Blancpain has taken care to protect the 6654.P self-winding movement of this watch by equipping its date mechanism with a security system. This allows the wearer to adjust each indication at any time without any risk to the movement. Water-resistant to 300m, the 43mm model is accompanied by a titanium bracelet, grey Nato or sailcloth strap.
Developed in collaboration with the French Navy’s combat swimmers, the Pelagos FXD boasts many functional features that are new to Tudor, such as its fixed strap bars that are machined into the main body of the 42mm titanium case for increased robustness and reliability. Another feature specific to this model is the 120-notch rotating bezel. Bidirectional with retrograde graduation from 60 to 0, it does not correspond to the ISO 6425:2018 standard of divers’ watches, but meets the specific needs of the method known as underwater navigation, one of the specialities of combat swimmers. Aesthetically, the Pelagos FXD draws from the Tudor divers’ watches historically used by the French Navy. Rendered in navy blue with characteristic square hour markers and angular hands known as Snowflake, it was introduced by the brand in 1969 to increase the intensity of the luminescence of its watches in poor light conditions. It also features a rotating bezel with a sand-blasted ceramic insert with luminescent material. Its 42mm titanium case is waterproof to 200m and is entirely satin-brushed for a matte effect to limit light reflections. The caseback bears the logo of the French Navy, comprising an anchor topped with a sailor’s hat, as well as a historically inspired engraving of “M.N.21” for “Marine Nationale 2021”. Another notable feature: the power reserve of the manufacture calibre MT5602 is “weekend-proof” or about 70 hours, which enables the wearer to take the watch off on a Friday evening and put it back on again on Monday morning without having to reset it.
The stand-out feature of the 1858 Iced Sea Automatic Date, Montblanc’s very first certified dive watch, is its “frozen” dial. Akin to looking into the depths of a glacier, the icy pattern with interlocking crystals is inspired by the Mer de Glace or Sea of Ice, the main glacier of the Mont-Blanc Massif. This realistic texture was realised with an age-old technique called gratté-boisé, in which a special wooden tool is used to carefully scrape the dial’s surface, a challenging feat given its 5mm thickness. The timepiece comes with a unidirectional bi-colour ceramic bezel; caseback with a 3D relief engraving of a scuba diver exploring the waters below a glacier; as well as a rubber strap and tapered interchangeable stainless steel bracelet that allows for fine adjustment to ensure a precise fit over a dive suit. The 41mm stainless steel timekeeper conforms to the ISO 6425 standard for diving watches and is water-resistant to 300m. Equipped with the automatic MB 24.17 movement, the watch is offered in three dial colours of blue (pictured), green, and black, each representing different hues of glacial ice from around the world.
The manufacture’s very first Ultra Deep watches made history in 2019 when they reached the deepest place on Earth – 10,932m in the Mariana Trench. This year, that same technology has been employed to a game-changing collection of seven models, now available to the public. Water-resistant to 6,000m, the 45.5m Ultra Deep range is led by a titanium version. Six other models are cast in the brand new O-megaSteel – a high-performance stainless steel alloy noted for its superior strength, whiter colour, shine and resistance to corrosion. On each O-megaSteel case is a ceramic bezel with diving scale and domed sapphire crystal, neatly bevelled and designed for maximum strength under pressure. A new crown guard is also integrated to the watch case to ensure protection in deep waters. Dials are either white or have gradient effects like the model pictured here with a polished orange ceramic bezel. Available in a rubber strap or O-megaSteel bracelet, the watches are all powered by the Co-Axial Master Chronometer Calibre 8912.
This story first appeared in the August 2022 issue of Prestige Singapore.