Zenith launched its groundbreaking El Primero chronograph watch in 1969, the same year that British luxury automaker Land Rover rolled out the world’s first luxury off-road, four-wheel-drive vehicle, the Range Rover. In 2016, the two respected marques kicked off a long-term partnership that has resulted in several very special Range Rover-branded timepieces. The latest, a limited edition of 200 pieces, is designed as a ticking companion piece to the next-generation Range Rover Evoque. Here’s everything you should know about the Zenith Defy Classic Range Rover, this week’s Watch to Watch.
The watch’s 41-mm case is made of brushed titanium and strives with its streamlined look to (ahem) evoke the recognizable silhouette of the Range Rover Evoque, Land Rover’s most compact sport utility vehicle. However, the visual cues to the vehicle do not end with the case curves: the openworked dial has a sculpted design inspired by the wheel rims of Range Rover vehicles, with a center-mounted seconds hand in the “Arctic Petrol” turquoise blue color used on the detailing of the Evoque’s steering wheel and seats. This distinctive color is also used for the movement’s oscillating weight, here in the shape of Zenith’s historical star logo, which is visible, along with other elements of the self-winding caliber, through a sapphire caseback.
Powering the Range Rover Special Edition is Zenith’s Elite 670 5K caliber, made up pf 167 components, including 27 jewels; beating at a frequency of 28,800 vph, and storing a power reserve of 48 hours. The movement, essentially a simpler, time-and-date-only sibling to Zenith’s more famous El Primero chronograph movement used in previous Range Rover editions, uses silicon for its escape wheel and lever and has been skeletonized for optimum lightness and visual interest. The timepiece is mounted on a black rubber strap endowed with a quilted pattern echoing that used on the upholstery of Range Rover SUVs. The whole ensemble attaches securely to the wrist with a folding clasp made of titanium. Price: $7,500.