Seiko is not missing a beat in its global campaign as a contender to some of Switzerland’s most revered brands. Many of you are familiar with its robust Prospex diving range. However, the Presage collection was a well-kept Japanese secret until it was released worldwide in 2016. Offering the very best Japanese craftsmanship with Seiko’s unquestionable technical expertise and exceptional value for money, the Presage collection introduces four new three-hand-and-date references gathered under the ‘Sharp Edged Series’ denomination. A dressy sports watch or a sporty dress watch, all four models will retail for EUR 990 in Europe from September 2020.
A slightly cryptic name at first, it soon becomes apparent why the ‘Sharp Edged Series’ name was chosen. Three of the watches in the latest Sharp Edged Series come in round 39.3mm stainless steel cases with a super-hard coating, while a more luxurious model is presented in a rose gold-plated case. The thickness is 11.1mm, and the water-resistance is 100 metres, statistics that align it more in the territory of a sports watch. However, not everything is quite what it seems, as we have begun to learn with Seiko’s watches.
The case and bracelet might remind you more of a Grand Seiko with their more pronounced forms. The profile is crisper, sharper and more angular than your regular Presage models giving the watch a more dynamic character. The lugs, for example, are not rounded but end abruptly and play with different finishes to emphasise their angularity. The top surfaces feature a subtle hairline finish (vertical brush) while the sides are polished to a brilliant gleam (a bit like Zaratsu polishing on Grand Seiko). The integrated three-link bracelet follows suit with each row clearly demarcated from the next thanks to the different finishes.
Hemp leaf pattern
The four references are differentiated by their dial colours and come in colours inspired by Japanese nature: Aitetsu, or indigo iron; Shironeri, an unbleached silky white; Tokiwa, the colour of evergreen trees; and Susutake, a brown smoked bamboo colour.
Like other members of the Presage family with dials made using traditional Japanese crafts – enamel, Urushi lacquer and even porcelain – the Sharp Edged Series features an engaging Japanese pattern on the dial. The hexagonal pattern that enlivens the dials is taken from the Japanese Asanoha, or hemp leaf pattern, a popular motif used in Japanese culture since the Heian period over a thousand years ago. The overlapping geometric pattern covers the entire dial and creates a multitude of reliefs and depressions that play with the light at different angles.
The indices are faceted and applied to the dial and the minute track features Lumibrite to enhance legibility, just like the thick Alpha-shaped hands that have a generous streak of Lumibrite down the middle. A framed date window matching the case colour and with a black background (the white dial has a white background) sits at 2 o’clock. Another detail that ups the quality factor is the use of sapphire crystal (with AR coating) instead of Hardlex over the dial and on the caseback.
Introduced by Seiko in 2019, calibre 6R35 is an automatic time and date movement, an upscale movement in the 6R family with an increased power reserve of 70 hours. Don’t expect any fancy finishes here, but the good news is that the movement is visible from the see-through caseback.
The three stainless steel models (SPB165, SPB167 and SPB169) comes with integrated steel bracelets with a three-fold clasp and push-button release. The steel model with rose gold plating (SPB170) comes on a horse leather strap with the same clasp as the steel bracelet. The anticipated retail price in Europe is EUR 990, and the Seiko Presage Sharp Edged Series will be available from September 2020 at Seiko boutiques and retailers worldwide.
More information at seikowatches.com.