There is a term for cyclist that applies to those of us who ride that are obsessed with getting a bike as light as it can get. They are called weight weenies. Well, for you weight weenies out there, meet your watch. Zenith is releasing a limited run of their El Primero Chronograph that tips the scales at a mere 15.9 grams. That is a bit over 1/2 an ounce, or to put it in another context, about 3 seedless grapes.
That in and of itself is pretty impressive, but realize that this watch has an automatic movement and a 50 hour power reserve. How do they get the weight so low? Titanium and carbon fiber, with a bit of aluminum as well. The case itself it aluminum and carbon with titanium pushers and a crown. There is a sapphire crystal up front and another for the exhibition caseback (waterproof to 100 meters), and the face is highly skeletonized around the eyes for the chronograph functions. So there is a lot going on with the dial, but it is still pretty legible, all packed into a 45mm think and 13.2 mm tall package
The movement is the El Primero 400B, redone in titanium to shave 25% of the weight, with 31 jewels and beating at 5 Hz. The oscillating weight is finished with a “Côtes de Genève” pattern and decorated with the Spindrift logo, to commemorate the partnership between Zenith and Spindrift Racing (a multi-hull sailboat racing team). The watch comes on a Nomex-coated black rubber strap with a PVD triple folding clasp. It is being offered in a limited, numbered edition of 250 pieces. zenith-watches.com
- Brand & Model: Zenith El Primero Lightweight Chronograph
- Price: $22,000 (based on other reports)
- Who we think it might be for: Those of us that drool over carbon fiber race craft.
- Would I buy one for myself based on what I’ve seen?: If I had the spare change.
- If I could make one design suggestion, it would be: The date ring does not add anything, and losing it would drop a gram or two
- What spoke to me the most about this watch: That “weight weenie” tag I used early on, that’s me.