Grand Seiko has launched a new series of watches based on the original Grand Seiko. These include three references that are faithful recreations of the 1960 original as well as a new model that reinterprets the original for the modern era. More on that later.
Though Grand Seiko was made available in international markets only in 2010, it has had cult status among collectors for very long now. You can read our feature about the Grand Seiko legacy here.
According to Seiko, since the international launch of Grand Seiko in 2010, the brand has enjoyed a prolonged period of rising demand and growing consumer interest. The big news nowise that Grand Seiko is now an independent brand. Just like how the original model from 1960, the reference 3180, carried the Grand Seiko branding at 12 o’ clock position, all future models will carry this branding at 12 o’ clock.
Grand Seiko has consistently reissued models from the Sixties. In 2015, it issued a mix of faithful recreations of the 62 GS. Four references in the his collection were faithful re-creations of the 1967 original with an automatic caliber and four were modern re-interpretations featuring Grand Seiko’s new movements, including Spring Drive.
When first launched in 1960, Grand Seiko introduced the majority of the reference 3180 in 80 micron gold-filled case, but some models were also made in platinum.
The internet is rife with rumors that the 3180 was also made in stainless steel, but there has never been any official acknowledgement of these models from Japan. One theory is that these stainless steel 3180 models were used as service watches. The new re-creations are therefore offered in both these metals and also in stainless steel.
The case on the new models is identical to the original, but its diameter has been increased from the 35 mm of the original to a more contemporary 38 mm now. It also uses a dual-curved sapphire crystal like in the original. The platinum version uses Platinum 999 and has 18k gold hour markers, just as on the original.
The base of the dial is also in gold, which allows the Grand Seiko logo to be particularly sharp in its outline and detail. The gold version uses 18k gold for the case and hour markers, while the stainless steel version also has a gold accent in the form of the Grand Seiko lion emblem embedded in the case back.
While the original from 1960 used the Caliber 3180, all three versions of 2017 uses the hand-cranked 9S64 caliber. The platinum version has been adjusted to an even higher level of precision, -1 to +5 seconds per day. All of them are offered as limited editions, each with a special “Inspection Certificate” and are available from March 2017. All three models are limited editions - 136 pieces in platinum, 353 examples in yellow gold and 1,960 pieces in stainless steel.
ALSO READ: The Modern Reinterpretation of the Grand Seiko 3180. Click here.