Delma is a family-owned brand based in Lengnau, Switzerland, with a solid track record of rugged sports watches adapted to racing, airborne and diving pursuits. The Continental Chronograph is a throwback to the brand’s rugged 1960s racing chronographs and has recently welcomed the Continental Pulsometer, a second, more elegant iteration with three scales and a monochrome bicompax dial in black or silver with racy red accents.
With a focus on high-performance sports watches, Delma produced its first chronograph in 1946. Coinciding with the rise of modern motorsports, the chronograph evolved to include a tachymeter scale on the dial in 1954, along with bicompax models in the 1960s. The strong design codes of these 1960s models are the inspiration behind the brand’s line-up of Continental Chronographs.
The new Continental Pulsometer can be seen as an evolution of the Continental Automatic and comes in the same, contemporary sized 42mm stainless steel case with a height of 15.2mm. The polished piston-style pushers underscore its vintage spirit, while the narrow sloping bezel – also polished – offers plenty of retail space for the dial with its classic bicompax layout. The brushed lugs and thick case middle add a sporty touch, and the signed crown screws down to ensure the 100m water-resistance of the case. The Continental Pulsometer is supplied with a 1960s-inspired 7-row stainless steel bracelet with brushed and polished surfaces or a grey handmade Italian leather strap.
While the Continental Automatic features a classic tachymetre scale on the sloping inner flange, the new Continental Pulsometer adds a telemeter and a pulsometer to the mix. The tachymeter scale, which measures speed over a set distance, retains its position on the sloping flange, but the telemeter, which relies on a visible and audible event to calculate distance, and the red pulsometer scale to measure heart rate, are placed on the periphery of the dial.
The new Continental Pulsometer models ditch the louder panda and reversed-panda dials of the Continental Automatic and adopt more elegant silver or black sunray-brushed dials. Obviously, the incorporation of two additional scales means that there is less space on the dial for the functions. Consequently, the counters seem marginally smaller, and more indices have been truncated or eliminated.
The snailed interiors of the two horizontally aligned counters at 3 o’clock (30-min chronograph) and 9 o’clock (running seconds) and the bright red central chronograph seconds hand pop out against the sunray-brushed background. For enhanced legibility, the faceted hour and minute hands, as well as the indices, are treated with Super-LumiNova. In line with its more elegant looks, the background colour of the bevelled date window matches the dial colour.
The automatic movement powering the watch is a Sellita SW510 automatic with a customised Delma rotor. This is a cam-operated bicompax chronograph movement with 27 jewels, 28,800vph (4Hz) and a 48-hour power reserve.
Availability & Price
The Delma Continental Pulsometer is part of the permanent collection and retails for CHF 2,375 / EUR 2,600 on a steel bracelet and CHF 2,325 / EUR 2,550 on a leather strap. For more information, please visit delma.ch.