The fifth edition of Dubai Watch Week kicks off with over 45 participating watch brands eager to unveil their novelties. Oris, the Swiss brand from Hölstein, presents a new chapter in the life of its iconic Big Crown Pointer Date. A fundamental piece in the brand’s history since 1938, the Big Crown Pointer Date is now powered by calibre 403, the new, in-house developed automatic movement with impressive resilience to magnetism, a solid five-day power reserve and a ten-year warranty.
Introduced in 1938, the Big Crown Pointer Date was conceived as a pilot’s watch and featured an oversized crown to help pilots adjust the time without having to take off their gloves. Another signature trait was the original date complication that used a central pointer hand. In constant production for over 80 years, the Big Crown Pointer Date was upgraded in June this year and equipped with the new automatic calibre 403. Based on the groundbreaking 2020 calibre 400 series, described by Rolf Studer, Oris’s Co-CEO, as the “new standard” in Swiss automatic movements, the movement was developed entirely in-house. However, the Big Crown Pointer Date Hölstein Edition 2021 was a limited edition of just 250 pieces. Today, the watch appears as a non-limited, serial production model.
Smaller case, refreshed dial
The earlier Hölstein Edition 2021 paved the way mechanically and aesthetically for this new, blue dial Big Crown Pointer Date. Like the limited edition, the case is smaller and sharper than traditional Big Crowns and closer in spirit to the pre-war original. The diameter of the watch being launched during Dubai Watch Week is just 38mm compared to the standard 40mm diameter of this family. Another departure from the 40mm models is the substitution of the classic coin-edged bezel with a flat polished bezel.
Design-wise, there are other subtle changes on the blue dial like the Arabic numerals printed with Super-LumiNova, the triangular red-tipped pointer hand for the date, the incorporation of a small seconds sub-dial at 6 o’clock and the use of simpler sword hands (filled with SLN) to replace the more vintage cathedral-style hands of larger models.
The Calibre 403
However, the most significant upgrade is the high-performance Oris automatic movement powering the watch. The mandates behind the development of calibre 400 were for a high-performance, anti-magnetic movement to keep pace with consumers’ lifestyles for longer periods of time. A proprietary manufacture movement, developed entirely in-house by COO Beat Fischli and his team, the twin barrels of the calibre ensure a 120-hour power reserve and the 30 non-ferrous components and silicon anchor and escape wheel ensure that the impact of magnetic fields on the movement is reduced by more than 90%. Well within COSC tolerances, precision is rated a -3/+5 seconds per day, and the watch comes with a 10-year warranty.
As an offshoot to the calibre 400 series introduced in October 2020, calibre 403 shares the same base architecture as the 400 but features a small seconds sub-dial at 6 o’clock and the peripheral pointer date function. Unlike the limited edition, the caseback of the new Oris Big Crown Pointer Date Calibre 403 is open and reveals the automatic movement.
Availability & Price
The non-limited Oris Big Crown Pointer Date with a blue dial comes on a black leather strap with a quick-change system. It is now available from the brand’s website and retailers. It retails for CHF 3,100. For more information, please visit Oris.ch.