While we all might dream of being able to spend big money on watches, the reality is that most people simply can’t or won’t. And when it comes to watches, most people start out with something simple and affordable. Brands like Seiko or Citizen immediately come to mind, as they’re known for providing excellent value for money. Zooming in on the latter, the brand is capable of some mighty impressive luxury watchmaking, yet it’s the simple and compelling budget-friendly watches like the Tsuyosa and Fujitsubo it’s best known for. Citizen once again underlines this by presenting four sensible and handsome references in the Challenger Diver Automatic collection.
Starting with the exterior, the stainless steel case of these new Challenge Diver Automatics comes in at 41mm and 13.7mm in height. On top, there’s a unidirectional rotating bezel with a metallic insert in black, green or blue, depending on the dial colour. A screw-down crown and a solid caseback ensure a 200m water resistance, which is more than enough to get you through everyday life and even the occasional snorkelling or diving adventure. The case is fully brushed, while the polished crown and bezel provide a bit of visual contrast.
Four dial variations are available, all with the same grained texture and a nice gradient effect running from the centre outward. The black dial is the most subtle, while you can also add a splash of orange, green or blue if you want something a bit more eye-catching. The applied indices, as well as the Mercedes-, arrow-, and lollipop-shaped hands, are luminous. The 3 o’clock marker is cut to accommodate the day-date window, which has a metallic frame.
Hidden under a closed caseback is the Citizen Calibre 8204-21A, similar to the Promaster Diver “Fugu” collection. This automatic movement runs at a rate of 21,600vph and has a power reserve of 45 hours. It’s regulated to run within a window of -10 to +20 seconds of deviation per day. Next to central hours, minutes and (hacking) seconds, it also shows you the day of the week and the date.
This quartet of compelling Citizen Challenge Diver comes on a black polyurethane strap for the black and orange dials or a green polyurethane strap for the green dial. The blue dial is the only one presented on a stainless steel bracelet, fitted to a folding clasp. Citizen keeps the prices more than sensible, as the watches retail for EUR 269 on the polyurethane strap, or EUR 299 on the steel bracelet. Once again Citizen shows it’s extremely capable of building excellent no-nonsense value-for-money watches, especially considering the fact it’s ISO 6425 certified.
For more information, please visit CitizenWatch.com.