REC Watches P51 – the successful story of a Kickstarter Launch
Think sixties, think hippies galore, think bell-bottom pants and mop-top hairstyles. Now think of the coolest Hollywood superstar in history, jumping a 1968 dark green Ford Mustang GT Fastback through the streets of downtown San Francisco. And lastly, think of a watch that would embody that image. Yes, there is the off chance that you maybe thinking of the newly launched REC Watches P-51, a watch built from old Mustang’s.
REC Watches is not an entirely new brand, as this is their second collection to be launched. The primary one was, to be honest, a fun collection but not something felt appropriate to cover on Monochrome. We uphold certain values to what we cover and quartz movements are almost excluded from our coverage. Exceptions are to be made of course, when we feel it adds something to the industry, we are not totally blind to that segment of the market.
The concept behind REC Watches is really quite interesting, even if it is about quartz watches but for us we feel more comfortable when it implies mechanical timepieces. The concept of the brand and thus all watches created by the brand is “Recover, Recycle, Reclaim”. All watches share a unique design element that basically makes ALL watches one of a kind. Whether you opt for the new P51 collection, or the Mark I, Cooper and Minimalist collections, every single REC shares a dial made of steel from a car. REC uses roofs, door panels and hoods from either a Mini for the first collections or a Mustang for the P51. By the way, we are talking about a FORD Mustang, while the name P-51 might make you think of the legendary P-51 Mustang fighter plane. Allegedly, the lead designer of the first concept vehicle compared its lines to the aircraft and thus named it “Mustang”.
Reclaimed steel from 1960’s Mustangs is used to make up the dial, after it has been rhodium plated and finished for a brushed look. This unique approach in using old material in a new way creates a story, a story backed by your own individual Story Card you get with each individual watch. This credit card sized card is equipped with an NFC chip and QR code to allow you to access the video that explains the exact story of the specific Mustang used for your P-51. Yes, there will be multiple watches with a dial out of one single Mustang, but it still is a cool little touch, isn’t it?
The P-51 is housed in a rounded squared case measuring 44 x 44 millimeter, which comes in three different styles. First up is the P-51-01, with a steel and black PVD case, steel bezel, black dial with orange hands and silver detailing, mounted on a black leather strap. The P-51-02 has a steel and black PVD case with black PVD bezel, grey dial with blue hands and silver detailing, with a brown leather strap. The last model in the collection is the P-51-03 which has a full black PVD case with a grey dial and gold hands, strapped on a black leather rally-strap.
The off-center mounted movement inside the P-51 is a Miyota 9130, displaying hours, minutes, seconds, date and power reserve. The result of the off-center placement of the movement is a dial design that looks very much like an instrument-cluster in a car. A fuel gage styled power reserve on top, a hour/minutes/seconds dial below that made to look like a speedometer and a date window at the bottom. Besides the obvious centerpiece, the dial, there is also a small plaque located at 10 o’clock with the VIN-number from the specific Mustang.
How entry-level the collection of REC-watches might have been in the past, how serious this collection looks to be now. A well thought-out concept, executed to the finest details and with a clear vision of what it is supposed to be. There is no ‘empty’ garnish, no secrecy about the selected parts or movements, no dressing-up to be more than what it is: a cool, car-inspired watch with an automatic movement and a properly cool story to tell.
For more information, please check out the REC Watches website. The Kickstarter campaign ended on the 4th of january, but the result is quite staggering: close to 3.2 million Danish Krones (roughly 430.000 Euros) was funded during the entire run of the campaign, while the initial goal was reached within 10 days after going live! It seems they have a winner on their hands.