Earlier this year, we showed you the new MP45 Monopusher Chronograph from Vertex. If you missed the article, you can read it here. We were quite taken with the distinctive look and performance of this watch. Based on its popularity, it seems we were not the only ones. Now, just as with the M100B, Vertex is introducing a limited edition black DLC-coated version of the Monopusher Chronograph, the MP45B, for those who prefer something a little more stealthy on the wrist. Although, if you’re expecting this watch to fly under the radar, you may be disappointed!
We’ve already covered the lengthy military history of British brand Vertex in previous articles, so I will only provide a brief recap here. Founded in London in 1916 by Claude Octvius Lyons, Vertex established a reputation for its precise and reliable watches. So much so that it was selected as one of twelve watch suppliers to the British Military during World War II (one of the so-called “Dirty Dozen”.) That watch design – known as WWW’s (Watch, Wrist, Waterproof) – provided the inspiration for the M100.
The MP45 Monopusher chronograph also traces its origins back to around this same era. According to Vertex, the company was commissioned by the MoD to make an ordnance timing watch, in conjunction with Swiss manufacturer Lemania (another member of the Dirty Dozen), using the latter’s in-house movement. If you look closely at this watch, you’ll immediately notice the resemblance with some of the old Lemania Military Monopusher watches. It never made it past the prototyping stage though, and the design ended up gathering dust in the Vertex archives.
Fortunately for us, Don Cochrane, great-grandson of Claude Lyons, and current owner of Vertex, brought out two modern-day production versions of the MP45 earlier this year. One with a hand-wound movement, and the other with an automatic. Now, two limited edition black DLC-coated versions, the Vertex MP45B Monopusher Chronograph, are joining the line-up. With almost identical spec sheets, the differences between these new models and the originals are purely aesthetic.
The slightly asymmetrical 40mm case is still in brushed steel and still features a double domed box crystal glass. Of course, now it’s coated in black DLC, giving it a decidedly more stealth look, which some will love, and others will not. The other key difference is the eye-catching use of red on the dial, for the chronograph hands. Not only is this striking visually, but it also makes the chronograph indications stand out even more clearly against the black dial.
Other than that, everything remains the same. You still have the choice of a manually-wound or automatic movement, both based on the Sellita SW510 MP and both with polished bevels and blued screws. I say choice, but in reality, there are only 27 pieces of each available, so if you want one specifically over the other you probably need to be quick about it. Each one is numbered and comes in a numbered case.
Price for the Vertex MP45B Monopusher Chronograph Black-DLC is quite reasonable, considering the exclusivity of the watch, at GBP 3,800 including VAT, representing only a very slight premium over the GBP 3,480 for the non-coated versions. They can be purchased directly through the Vertex website.