In 1998, the unveiling of caliber 9S marked a new epoch in the realm of Grand Seiko‘s mechanical watchmaking. This entirely new movement was meticulously conceived to embody the hallmark precision and exceptional resilience that had already become synonymous with the Japanese luxury brand. It swiftly evolved into the platform upon which the entire spectrum of Grand Seiko’s mechanical calibers was constructed, resulting in a comprehensive array of movements, each distinguished by diverse functions, escapements, and styles. The latest masterpiece in this portfolio was the Tentagraph, Grand Seiko’s first mechanical chronograph, which was first introduced at this year’s Watches and Wonders.
Marking the celebration of 25 years dedicated to the refinement of caliber 9S, Grand Seiko unveils two new GMT creations within its Sport and Elegance Collections. As is typical for the brand, they draw their artistic inspiration from the majestic Mt. Iwate in Iwate Prefecture, where the mechanical timepieces of Grand Seiko are produced.
Sport Collection Caliber 9S 25th Anniversary Limited Edition Watch (SBGJ275)
The new Sport Collection Caliber 9S 25th Anniversary Limited Edition Watch, Ref. SBGJ275, features a dial that illustrates the sea of clouds sometimes seen at daybreak, when still, humid air forms dense clouds that overlap with one another to create a beautiful tapestry. Framed by a rotatable 24-hour bezel with an inlay of sapphire crystal, it features the central hour hand and an additional scale on the flange for the indications of a third time zone. The stainless steel case has a diameter of 44.2mm and offers a water resistance of 200 meters. as is typical for Grand Seiko, the self winding high-beat movement, caliber 9S86, is protected against magnetic fields up to 4,800 A/m. The manufacture movement offers a power reserve of 55 hours and an accuracy of +5 to –3 seconds per day. Its oscillating weight made from titanium and treated with an anodic oscillation process to achieve a light blue hue can be admired through a pane of sapphire in the case back. This exhibition case back is a first for a mechanical Grand Seiko with a pressure resistance rated up to 20 bar.
The Ref. SBGJ275 is limited to 2,000 pieces and will be available exclusively from the online Grand Seiko Boutique starting in September 2023 before availability extends to the Grand Seiko Boutiques and select retail partners the following month. Pricing is marked at approximately $9,400 when converted to USD.
Elegance Collection Caliber 9S 25th Anniversary Limited Edition Watch (SBGM253)
With a sunray dial in the blue hue of the sky as seen from the summit of Mt. Iwate, the second Anniversary Limited Edition, Ref. SBGM253, adopts the DNA of the Elegance Collection. A classic form prevails thanks to the mirror-polished bezel and case of this creation, gently curved lugs with a distortion-free mirror finish achieved by Zaratsu polishing, and a box-shaped sapphire crystal.
And, as with the Sport Collection’s newcomer, the centered blue GMT hand can be aligned with the blue 24-hour scale that surrounds the hour markers. The see-through case back provides a view of the self-winding 9S66 GMT movement, which has been outfitted with a titanium oscillating weight in Grand Seiko’s signature blue hue achieved by the same anodic oxidation treatment. With a vibration of 28,800 vibrations per hour and the same accuracy like the caliber 9S86, it offers a power reserve of 72 hours.
Also protected from magnetic fields, it beats in a more modestly proportioned case with a diameter of 39.5 mm. It is water resistant to 3 bar. Limited to 1,700 pieces, the watch will be available at Grand Seiko boutiques and selected retail partners worldwide from October 2023 at a price of approximately $6,800.
To learn more, visit Grand Seiko, here.