Introducing the Two-Tone Grand Seiko Spring Drive Chronograph GMT SBGC240
I never want to be one of those people who ever says, “I told you so” or “I’ve been saying this for years”. I have, however, been a fan of two-tone watches for a number of years and actually wear a steel and yellow gold chrono on a near-daily basis. What’s not to love? The timeless, goes-with-anything appeal of stainless steel with a smattering of hint-of-luxe gold. In fact, one of my watch buddies calls me the ‘Two-Tone Champione’. See, I’ve been saying this for years – two-tone rocks!
Established for 140 years this year, Grand Seiko is celebrating with a number of important releases that are all celebrating Kintaro Hattori’s founding of the brand in 1881. It was actually a full 79 years before the company launched Grand Seiko, but it was certainly worth waiting for and has become one of the most esteemed watchmakers in existence. And what could be a better demonstration of the brands commitment to accuracy than a chronograph?
The watch is powered by the Spring Drive calibre 9R86, which Grand Seiko suggest may be the most accurate chronograph in the world. It has an accuracy rate of +/- one second per day and thanks to a glide motion stopwatch hand, stops exactly when the chrono button is pressed and not at the nearest ‘tick’. All this is achieved via a column wheel and vertical clutch assembly. All this can be seen through a display case back.
The watch is configured in classic bi-metal style, with a steel mid case and gold crown, pushers and bezel. The bezel is dodecahedron 18k gold with a zircona ceramic tachymeter insert. The steel case is Zaratsu finished with a hairline finish and the sharp, distortion-free lines on the sides that are Grand Seiko’s signature. The black dial has all gold accents including applied gold hour markers that are perfectly lined up with the ‘points’ on the 12-sided bezel. A small detail but lovely in execution. In my mind the black bezel insert gives the watch a very sporty look, whilst the case finishing and refined nature of the dial lend the watch a smart and elegant vibe that one could term dressy too. A relevant watch with broad appeal is exactly what Grand Seiko have created here. Form a queue for the limited run of 500 pieces.
Self-winding Caliber 9R86 with manual winding mechanism; hour, minute, small running seconds (9 o’clock); chronograph with 30-minute and 12-hour totalizer; date; 72-hour power reserve; accuracy: ±1 second per day (±15 seconds per month)
Case & Dial
43.8mm stainless steel case; Zirconia ceramic and 18k yellow gold bezel; 18k yellow gold push buttons; see-through case back; screw-down crown
Steel bracelet; three-fold clasp with push button release; an additional crocodile strap is included
Availability & Pricing
Available at the Grand Seiko Boutiques and Grand Seiko Salons in July 2021; limited edition of 500 pieces
Approximate recommended retail price in Europe: €19,200