Pre-Baselworld 2014: Three new Zenith timepieces to discover

My full respect – chapeau! – to the work of CEO Jean-Fred Dufour and his entire team! Zenith surprises me again and again and I am sure there is still more to come.

 

You will discover the Zenith novelties being presented on three seperate pages, so don´t miss to continue to read the post …

 

The Zenith El Primero Lightweight.

The new El Primero Lightweight is distinguished by its carbon case featuring an original and complex construction. It combines flowing dynamics and lightness while displaying exceptional power, very much like the most appealing automotive bodywork. Sporty, contemporary and decidedly masculine, the new El Primero Lightweight gives a new breath of life to the Zenith collection, while confirming the innovative capacities and creative daring of the Manufacture. Zenith chose titanium to make the main parts of the movements, which are the heaviest when they are made in brass; namely the main plate and five bridges, the barrel bridge, the balance bridge, the lever-bridge, the lever-wheel bridge and the chronograph bridge. The result is a 25% lighter weight. The open worked dial provides another bird’s eye view of this legendary movement, the El Primero 400B Titanium.

This is a dynamic reinterpretation of the collection’s classic design characteristics. The transparency of the central part makes it even lighter and provides a clear view of the skeleton-worked El Primero calibre. The disc-type date display is also both light and efficient thanks to cut-out stencil-style numerals standing out against a red dot at 6 o’clock. The generously hollowed-out facetted hour-markers bear a luminescent coating, while the light grey, blue and anthracite counters pick up the three characteristic colours of the 1969 El Primero chronograph that have become one of the collection’s key signature features. The blue central sweep-seconds chronograph hand with its small Zenith star is accurate to the nearest tenth of a second. The choice of carbon reinforces the technical and sporty look. The internal structure of the case is in ceramised aluminium, a cutting-edge material blending lightness, resistance and hardness. Titanium was chosen for the pushpieces and the crown.

 

Zenith El Primero Lightweight

Zenith El Primero Lightweight

 

Chronograph function: 36,000 A/h (= 5Hz) for 1/10th of a second precision

El Primero 400B Automatic

Calibre: 13‘‘‘ (diameter : 30 mm)

Thickness: 6.60 mm

328 parts

31 jewels

36,000 A/h (= 5 Hz)

Oscillating weight adorned with “côtes de genève” motif

Titanium components: main plate, barrel bridge, balance bridge, chronograph bridge, lever bridge and lever-wheel bridge

Over 50-hour power reserve

45 mm carbon case, open worked dial with three counters

250-piece limited edition

 

Zenith El Primero Lightweight

Zenith El Primero Lightweight

Zenith El Primero Lightweight

Zenith El Primero Lightweight

Zenith El Primero Lightweight

Zenith El Primero Lightweight 

Zenith El Primero Lightweight

Zenith El Primero Lightweight

 

 

 

The Zenith El Primero Synopsis

The line comprises three references, capitalises on a legendary movement while remaining true to several iconic Zenith signature touches. Thanks to its distinctive dial opening highlighted by a screw-fastened appliqué and revealing a glimpse of its silicon components, it has never been so easy to admire the El Primero calibre 4613 in action. An avant-garde material is featured in the El Primero Synopsis models: silicon represents a major breakthrough in mechanical watchmaking. Namely eliminating the need for lubricants.

The lever and escape wheel of the El Primero Synopsis models are made of silicon, harder than steel, which leads to reduced friction, and far lighter, which requires less force to achieve the same result, silicon also boasts a low friction coefficient and is both anti-magnetic and corrosion-resistant. It is definitely a material with a promising future!

 

Zenith El Primero Synopsis

Zenith El Primero Synopsis

Zenith El Primero Synopsis

Zenith El Primero Synopsis; lever and escape wheel made out of  silicon

Zenith El Primero Synopsis

Zenith El Primero Synopsis

 

MOVEMENT

El Primero 4613, Automatic

160 parts

19 jewels

36,000 A/h (=5 Hz)

Oscillating weight adorned with “côtes de genève” motif

Over 50-hour power reserve

 

Zenith El Primero Synopsis

Zenith El Primero Synopsis

Zenith El Primero Synopsis

Zenith El Primero Synopsis

Zenith El Primero Synopsis

Zenith El Primero Synopsis

 

 

 

The Zenith Pilot Type 20 Grand Feu

The latest addition to the Pilot collection is indeed exceptional in many ways, starting with the now famous 60 mm-diameter case that has already made a huge impact on several models in the collection. It now finds a new expression here, entirely carved out of a block of sapphire. Only the lugs, bezel and crown are made of white gold. Meticulous workmanship is required to create a perfect case of this size in such a fragile and precious material. It is the first sapphire case in the history of the Manufacture Zenith and also the largest sapphire case in watchmaking history.

The mission of this new aviator watch goes well beyond this technical prowess, since the Pilot Type 20 Grand Feu also features another major development: its dial. The surface made of Grand Feu enamel in a complex and subtle process lends unique character to each of these watch faces. The latest Zenith pilot’s watch is thus solidly equipped to find its place in the legend.

Fascinating in all respects, this model will be issued in a strictly limited 10-piece edition.

 

Zenith Pilot Type 20 Grand Feu

Zenith Pilot Type 20 Grand Feu

Zenith Pilot Type 20 Grand Feu

Zenith Pilot Type 20 Grand Feu

 

In 1960 the Manufacture produced a movement that would make its mark on history: Calibre 5011K.

Beating every existing precision record in its category – Neuchâtel Observatory awarded it the title of the most precise chronometer ever presented – this mechanical movement that became a legend was to equip marine chronometers and pocket-watches. A small number of original 5011K calibres, found in the archives of the Manufacture, have been updated and remarkably decorated to now find their place in several Pilot Type 20 models consistently issued in extremely limited editions. 

 

Zenith Pilot Type 20 Grand Feu

Zenith Pilot Type 20 Grand Feu; Calibre 5011K 

 

The Calibre 5011K movement is housed in a sapphire case measuring 60 mm in diameter, chased and engraved by hand

 

Functions: Hours and minutes in the centre, small seconds at 9 o’clock, power reserve at 3 o’clock

Calibre 5011K movement, hand-wound

134 parts

19 jewels

18,000 A/h (= 2,5 Hz)

Hand-engraved and chased scrolling motifs

48-hour power reserve

Case: in sapphire 60 mm diameter cambered glare-resistant sapphire crystal

Dial: in grand feu enamel arabic numerals in grand feu enamel

White gold hand-chased and engraved white gold bezel, lugs and crown.

Oversized crown, the signature of aviator watches.

 

Zenith Pilot Type 20 Grand Feu

Zenith Pilot Type 20 Grand Feu