In the ever-growing world of accessible automatic watches, there are several paths you can take. You can get adventurous by looking at newcomers, the so-called micro-brands launching collections thanks to crowdfunding, or you can play it safe and look at mainstream, established brands with an extensive track record. Some names will immediately come to mind, such as Citizen, Orient or Seiko (yes, Japanese brands are excellent in this field). Another one that comes from across the Atlantic is Timex. With watches like the Marlin, the American brand has already proved its ability to create simple, elegant, yet truly accessible automatic watches. And now, with the Timex Expedition North Titanium Automatic 41mm, it’s all about adventure.
A sub-400 dollar titanium field watch with an automatic movement, a sapphire crystal and 200m water-resistance might sound like mission impossible – at least, according to Swiss standards. Or it could have been the result of a margin-cutting newcomer benefiting from a Kickstarter push. Except that today, this watch is the result of a brand that also happens to be one of the largest producers in America. The watch in question might look familiar to some, as it’s based on a limited-edition model created with The James Brand. But now, it comes as part of the permanent collection with some slight alterations to make it different.
The concept is simple and proven: a rugged field watch made for exploration with solid specs and resistance in mind, fitted with an automatic movement, a legible dial and quite an attractive price. The new Timex Expedition North Titanium Automatic is classic, with a 41mm case made of solid and lightweight matte bead-blasted titanium. With a height of 12.5mm, it comes fully equipped with a sapphire crystal, an anti-reflective coating over the dial, a see-through window for the screwed caseback, crown guards protecting the screw-down crown, and a comfortable 200m water-resistance. Basically, everything you need and more. There’s not much to speak about the watch’s design except that it looks like a purpose-built tool, which is what you’d expect from a field watch. The only decorative element can be found on the crown, with a black and neon green Expedition North logo. Rugged and light, discreet and sleek…
The dial of the Timex Expedition North Titanium focuses on legibility and functionality. The matte-grained surface produces an anti-reflective effect and provides a bold contrast to the white Arabic numerals and hands – the latter generously filled with luminous material. Things are kept simple, with an Expedition North at noon and mentions of both the material and depth rating at 6 o’clock. Complementing the rugged look, this new Timex is worn on a 20mm eco-friendly strap made from Ecco DriTan leather that uses water-saving technology. It’s closed by a titanium pin buckle and features quick-release spring bars.
Under the hood is a well-known movement, an automatic Miyota calibre 8215. This self-winding entry-level engine beats at 3Hz, stores 42 hours of power reserve and features a stop-seconds and quick date. The reported accuracy isn’t the best (-20/+40 sec/day), but reality shows that these movements often perform better. The transparent back reveals a standard-looking movement, but this is to be expected in this price range.
The Timex Expedition North Titanium Automatic 41mm is released as part of the permanent collection. It will be available worldwide (it’s listed on both the American and European websites of the brand). It is priced at EUR 349 or USD 349, which is impressive considering the whole package and equipment. For more details, please visit www.timex.com.