The Yema Superman is undoubtedly one of the most emblematic watches ever produced by the French watchmaking industry, with a recognition that goes far beyond its country of origin. Launched in the early 1960s, it was a typical skin-diver watch, a serious instrument for recreational diving enthusiasts, back then, a flourishing market. After some years of absence, both the brand and the watch have been tastefully revived, with the Yema Superman developing into a proper collection comprising multiple styles and even complications (such as GMT models). Last year, the Jura-based brand introduced an upgraded edition named the Yema Superman 500. And now, it comes in two new versions with cool dial colours and a date.
Born in 1963, the Superman is clearly Yema’s star watch. Introduced as a slightly simplified and more accessible alternative to the professionally oriented dive watches on the market (think Rolex, Blancpain or Omega), it quickly made an impression on the recreational diving community with its 300m water-resistance and unique bezel-locking device. Additionally, the design was cool and quite unique, making it now a cult model. It’s been nicely re-edited by the brand, first with a faithful reissue. Yet, last year, Yema launched the Superman 500, a watch that combined the best of the vintage world with historical design cues and modern specifications.
The Yema Superman 500 upgraded the model and corrected some of its internal flaws. While keeping the design intact, Yema beefed up the specs with a revised bezel-locking system (an emblematic feature of the collection) with tighter manufacturing, allowing it to stay firmly in place and to be more precisely adjusted. This also brought more stability with the crown tube; the watch is water-resistant to 30m with the crown unscrewed. Additionally, the sapphire crystal has been redesigned, being 0.3mm thinner yet 0.6mm wider. The result is a watch that is sleeker and more legible. Combine all of these features with a reinforced 2.2mm steel back, and water-resistance is now rated at 500m.
Evolutions were not only concerning the habillage but also the mechanics. To make it as French as possible, the movement is now a French-developed and assembled proprietary calibre, the YEMA2000. An alternative to off-the-shelf engines such as Sellita, ETA or Miyota, it delivers a 42h power reserve, a 4Hz frequency and has been adjusted in 4 positions for an accuracy of -10/+10 seconds/day.
Following the classic time-only and GMT models, it is now time for the third iteration, the Yema Superman 500 Dato. As you’ve probably guessed, this pair of new models comes with a date feature, classically positioned at 3 o’clock – no worries, if you don’t like a date on your dive watch, the no-date versions are still available. Design-wise, the classic skin-diver style with its pointy, elongated lugs, thin bezel with black aluminium insert and all-important crown and locking device still firmly in place.
Like always, Yema offers two size options, and the steel case is available in 39mm and 41mm, respectively measuring 48mm or 49.50mm in length. The collection is composed of two specific dials (not available on the no-date models), either in sandblasted white with black accents and dark hands or semi-matte khaki green with beige-toned markers and hands. On both versions, the date disc matches the dial. Additionally, Yema offers customers the choice of the model’s classic steel bracelet or a black FKM rubber strap.
Available for pre-order from today, with deliveries scheduled for the end of June 2023, the Yema Superman 500 Dato will retail for EUR 1,249 on a steel bracelet and EUR 1,329 on an FKM rubber strap. For more details, please visit www.yema.com.