Glashütte Original, the Swatch Group-owned firm that emerged from the end of Cold War-era nationalization of Germany’s top watchmaking companies, this year adds an entirely new and sporty collection called “Spezialist,” which launches with the new SeaQ line of dive watches. Of these, vintage-watch enthusiasts are most likely to home in on the most retro-inspired of the pieces, the SeaQ 1969.
The German brand has had modern success with vintage-styled models like the Sixties and Seventies, which hearken back to the “Spezimatic” watches from those pre-unification decades. The SeaQ 1969, like the other new models in the collection, the mainline SeaQ and SeaQ Panorama Date takes inspiration from the Spezimatic Type RP TS 200″, a watch developed for sports divers.
It is distinguished from these other models in several regards, among them the historically accurate inscriptions on the galvanic black dial: “26 Rubies,” referring to the number of jewels in the movement, and “Shockproof,” touting the watch’s robust construction.
Another vintage aspect is the use of colors: green, luminous hands and beige-colored “Old Radium” luminous treatment on the Arabic numerals and indices. Limited to just 69 pieces, this SeaQ 1969 has its limited edition number engraved on its baseplate, along with a period-appropriate trident maritime symbol, the Glashütte Original “Double G” logo, and a 20-wave motif representing the watch’s 20-bar (200 meter) water resistance.
The polished and satin-brushed stainless steel case measures 39.5 mm in diameter and 12.15 mm thick, and is topped by a unidirectional rotating ceramic bezel. Inside the case, which meets the DIN 8306 and ISO 6425 international standards for diving watches, is the automatic Caliber 39-11, which holds a 40-hour power reserve, beats at a 28,800-vph frequency, and includes a stop-seconds function along with a date display at 3 o’clock. The SeaQ 1969 comes with two straps, one in embossed rubber and the other a water-resistant nylon mesh strap developed specially for this sporty new collection.
The regular production model SeaQ is available in four references – four strap options include two tropical rubber strap style options, one with a fabric strap and a three-link stainless steel bracelet. All of them are fitted with a close stainless steel caseback and are similar to the limited edition SeaQ 1969 model.
The second model, the SeaQ Panorama Date, is water resistant up to 30 bar, approximately 300 meters, and perfectly suitable for even professional divers. It uses a 43.5 mm stainless steel case with a screw down crown and sapphire crystal caseback. It is powered by Caliber 36-13 version. While the SeaQ1969 and the regular SeaQ starts at €8,500 on the rubber strap and go up to €9,700 on the steel bracelet, the Panorama Date starts at €11,000 on the rubber and fabric straps and go up to €12,00 on the bracelet.