LVMH Watch Week: Zenith Embraces Emerald with the Defy 21 Urban Jungle

LVMH Watch Week kicks off today, and following right on the heels of the attention-grabbing Chronomaster Sport and Revival A385, one of the three presenting maisons, Zenith, has unveiled the latest eye-popping addition to its avant-garde Defy line, the new Defy 21 Urban Jungle.

Dressed in dark green tones, the model, as its name implies, is geared toward a metropolitan-based consumer looking for an elevated, sporty daily wearer. The Urban Jungle is another boldly colorful update to the Defy collection, following an array of such releases through 2020, most notably the violet version of the chronograph (pictured below), a jeweled pink variation, and a Land Rover collaboration, among a number of other releases.  

The verdant design begins with a 44-mm khaki green ceramic case, complete with gray rectangular pushers, a stylized conical crown, and flat-edged, hooded-style lugs. The entire case has a satin finish, and it’s secured to the wrist via a black rubber strap topped with a khaki green cordura rubber that lends it a ribbed look; the strap fastens to the wrist with a microblasted titanium double-folding clasp. The choice of ceramic for the case is significant, not only because it demonstrates Zenith’s continued interest in the material but also because it gives the case an uncommon and impressiveness sturdiness compared to the steel and titanium that are more frequently used in the line.

A flat-topped green bezel surrounds the dial, while a sapphire crystal sits over the top, protecting its openworked architecture. The skeletonized dial itself continues the use of khaki green on its bridges, though it’s also accented throughout with black, white, and metallic accents. Along the outermost edge we see one of the key features that define the Defy line — the 1/100th-second chronograph counter scale with its matching, central star-weighted pointer. Just within this scale is a contrasting black minute ring, punctuated with white markers for each passing minute, while applied rhodium-plated markers, filled with Super-LumiNova, are used for the hours.

Other complications are displayed unconventionally on the skeletonized dial. Toward the 3 o’clock position, a 30-minute chronograph counter sits; parallel to it at 9 o’clock is a small seconds counter. Perpendicular to the center to these features, the 60-second chronograph counter lies at 6 o’clock — this indicator, of course, moved to a subdial because the aforementioned 1/100th-second chronograph counter squats in its traditional location. Finally, toward the top, a green-and-white power-reserve indicator shows the status of the movement’s 50 hours of autonomy.

Through an exhibition caseback, the opposite side of El Primero 9004 automatic caliber is on full view. As on the front side, many areas are finished with khaki green coloring, most notably on the mainplate and the oscillating weight. The chronometer-certified movement beats, like all El Primero movements, at 36,000 vph; this mechanism, specifically used in Defy models, also features an additional escapement for the chronograph function, which beats at a tenfold frequency of 360,000 vph when activated.

The Zenith Defy 21 Urban Jungle will be available in Winter 2021 on a non-limited basis, with a price of $14,500.

To learn more and inquire for purchase, you can visit Zenith’s website, here.

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  1. Gene Bricker

    Lots of other watches I covet at $14000+. This one is way over priced. IMHO.

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