For the past few years, Zenith has been exploring textures and colours, mostly on its contemporary and bold chronograph in the Defy collection. You can hardly accuse the brand of being conservative when you recall the military green, black-and-white or even the ultra-special Pantone edition. Following the Ultraviolet edition of last year, Zenith is back with another colour of the spectrum: deep blue. Here’s the Zenith Defy 21 Ultrablue.
In the same vein as the Ultraviolet edition, the new Ultrablue focuses on this colour, which appears on the movement, the dial and the bracelet. The rest of the watch is deliberately left as neutral as possible so as not to disturb the attraction of the vivid metallic blue. The muted case retains its contours and shapes and its relatively imposing proportions, with a 44mm diameter and a 14.50mm height. However, it is made of microblasted titanium, which results in a darker grey tone and a matte, slightly frosted surface. Complementing the blue theme, the integrated rubber strap features a blue Cordura-effect rubber insert with tone-matching stitching.
Slightly more conventional than the violet edition, but no less present, the Zenith Defy 21 Ultrablue only uses blue on its technical parts. Indeed, the rest of the habillage, meaning the applied elements of the dial, are as toned-down as the case, with matte grey closed chronograph registers. The markers and hands are rhodium-plated, faceted and coated with Super-LumiNova. The strong blue colour only reveals itself underneath these elements, on the movement’s bridges. This contrast between bold colours and muted surfaces and texture is pleasant and gives Zenith’s vision of an integrated luxury sports watch its own personality.
Even though treated differently from other versions of the Defy 21, the movement is well-known… and still impresses. It is the result of intense work on the iconic El Primero movement, which has been highly modified to meet 21st-century standards. The timekeeping part of this automatic chronograph movement is still regulated by the signature 5Hz (36,000 vibrations/hour) escapement. However, here the brand adds a second escapement devoted exclusively to the regulation of the chronograph – a cam-lever mechanism engages this secondary gear train when the chronograph button is pressed. This escapement beats at the impressive frequency of 50Hz (360,000 vibrations/hour). This movement boasts 50 hours of power reserve (when the chronograph isn’t engaged) and is chronometer-certified by Time Lab. The back reveals a blue-coated star-shaped rotor and bridges.
The Zenith Defy 21 Ultrablue will be part of the permanent collection, next to the Ultraviolet edition. It is now available from Zenith boutiques and the brand’s online store. It is priced at CHF 13,400 or EUR 13,100.
For more details, please visit zenith-watches.com.