No Boys Allowed: new Victorinox I.N.O.X. V

If the feminist enforcers at Jezebel or Mic ever get hold of the press release for the new Victorinox I.N.O.X. V “ladies’ timepiece” they will rend their garments and burn the atelier to the ground.  I’ll leave clichés about “today’s empowered women” and “a mad dash across a rush-hour station on high heels” to them. But I have an horological problem with this marketing target: since when is a chunky 37mm watch only for the ladies?

The V is a scaled down version of the 43 mm Victorinox I.N.O.X. that was introduced in 2014. Aside from a dash of pink on one variation, the only thing making this a watch for women is the smaller size. But assuming a man can’t wear a 37 mm watch—or a woman can’t wear anything larger—is just as silly as assuming men don’t wear pink.

The details of the stainless steel case—slab sides, chunky bezel, exaggerated guards on the screw-down crown—match the original I.N.O.X. The 130-point durability test is the same, too, which gives some credibility to the absurd acronym “Impact Neutralizing Object for the X-tremes.” (Or maybe it refers to “inoxydable,” French for stainless; that seems a lot more sensible.) Regardless, this is a legitimate tool watch with a strong tool watch look. There is nothing soft, subtle, or delicate about it.

As happy as I am with a 38.5 mm Sinn 556 or a 38 mm Seiko SARB, I can’t help but wonder what a 37 mm I.N.O.X. V would feel like on my wrist. Historically, men’s watches have been even smaller. There is no reason—other than a narrow marketing plan—that a 37 mm watch couldn’t look perfectly at home on a slim man’s wrist. The Swiss Ronda 715 quartz doesn’t do much for me, nor can I see much use for the rubber “shield”—a removable rubber bumper that comes with the watch. But the case is unique and the paracord or rubber bracelets give it a purposeful look. I guess I’ll have to buy some high heels and give it a try. victorinox.com

Victorinox I.N.O.X. V

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  • Price: $575USD
  • Who’s it for? “Today’s empowered women, driven by their unique characters and lifestyles.” Or anyone who likes a smaller watch.
  • Would I wear it? It’s a retro-cool size and a chunky case that might work for me.
  • What I’d change? A stainless bracelet would be a nice addition.
  • Standout feature? Scaled-down chunky I.N.O.X. case.

Tech Specs from Victorinox

  • Case Material: Stainless steel
  • Case Size: 37 mm
  • Movement: Swiss Ronda 715 quartz
  • Crystal: Scratch-resistant, triple-coated anti-reflective sapphire crystal
  • Band Material: Black or white rubber strap; grey with pink marker or blue with red marker paracord strap
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