Filling the gap that Watches & Wonders (née SIHH) shift to April has left in the horological release calendar, LVMH’s watch division has decamped to Dubai for a brisk opening salvo of new releases under the name of LVMH Watch Week. Zenith is (as the logo suggests), one of the star attendees, and in addition to some serious women’s releases, there’s five other debuts worthy of your attention.
DEFY 21 Land Rover Edition
It’s set to be a big year for the mighty Land Rover Defender, as the cult classic off-roader has received a significant upgrade and a new modern look. This aesthetic has flowed over into the Zenith’s latest collab with the brand (the two brands have been working together since 2016), the DEFY 21 Land Rover Edition. As you might expect given the name, the base calibre here is the impressive El Primero 21 – a high-frequency chronograph that’s accurate to 1/10th of a second. Only in this limited edition of 250 pieces, this mighty movement, which we’re used to seeing in its skeletonised form, is hidden away behind a demure grey dial, featuring – for the first time – a linear power reserve display. And there’s a titanium case to match, the micro-blasted finish gives the watch a stealthy, minimalist makeover, absorbing light and highlighting the geometry of the case.
DEFY 21 Carl Cox
Keeping in the DEFY family, this Zenith DEFY 21 Carl Cox is how the brand (which has previously dropped a hot limited edition with DJ Swizz Beats) went official with their newest friend of the brand – Carl Cox. Cox is a legendary figure on the house and techno scene, and this iteration of the El Primero Defy 21 strikes a few notes in that tune. Aside from the generally futuristic carbon fibre bezel woven with luminous material (the resin, it appears), there’s luminous stitching on the strap (glow sticks anyone?), and the running seconds indicator at nine is shaped like a vinyl record. This watch is a limited drop of 200 pieces.
A384 Revival with Ladder Bracelet
Turning the volume dial down a few notches, let’s have a look at the A384 Revival, now with ladder bracelet. Released as part of the 50th birthday celebrations for the El Primero, the A384 Revival won collector’s hearts with its distinctive, bold geometry and smaller 37mm case. Well, the final piece of the puzzle is now in place, as Zenith has faithfully recreated the ‘ladder’ style bracelet, designed by Gay Frères, that featured on the original. And while the open style of the bracelet won’t be to everyone’s tastes, it’s pure, peak retro.
Pilot Type 20 Rescue and Pilot Type 20 Chronograph Rescue
Looking even further into Zenith’s heritage we find the Pilot’s watch – particularly the Type 20. Born from the ye-olde world of aviator’s instruments, today we’re treated to two updates – the Pilot Type 20 Rescue and Pilot Type 20 Chronograph Rescue. With a stainless steel case and sun-ray dials in a striking slate, the applied Arabic numerals made from solid Super-LumiNova ensure optimum visibility. At the same time, the yellow highlights and shearling-inspired straps guarantee optimum style.