Grand Seiko celebrates 25 years from the release of the first 9F calibre. With this occasion, the Japanese brand released two new references: the Grand Seiko SBGT241 and the Grand Seiko SBGV238. The new timepieces are powered by an impressive new quartz calibre, the 9F83 (SBGT241) and, respectively 9F82 (SBGV238). One of the anniversary pieces features also an exhibition case-back to reveal the breath-taking finishes, specific to a Grand Seiko timepiece.
Grand Seiko 9F – a bit of history
Grand Seiko is a brand of high expectations. Last year, the brand amazed us with the Grand Seiko Spring Drive 8 Day SBGD202 and the Grand Seiko Hi-Beat 36000 Limited Edition SBGJ227. But Grand Seiko is no stranger to anniversary pieces. For example, the recreation of the first Grand Seiko was released with historical significance and a great emotional value for collectors.
The story of the Calibre 9F started in 1988 with the calibre 95GS. The new movement was in response to the demand for the better and spectacular quartz movement from fans and collectors. The typical market approach was to add more functionalities to the movements, but the Grand Seiko team decided to go in the direction of the improved precision and durability – the ideas which first inspired the Grand Seiko division. After five years of development, the calibre 9F83 was completed. It was the first of the 9F impressive series.
Between the features available were the instantaneous calendar change, a backlash auto-adjust mechanism to eliminate any tremble os shiver coming from the seconds’ hand, twin pulse control system offering an increased torque and a unique protective shield against the dust endangering the gears or the stepping motor. The brand claims it is the highest performance quartz watch in the world.
Paying a homage to the advance quartz watchmaking
Grand Seiko 25th Anniversary watches proudly pay a homage to the 1993 piece. The brand chooses to keep the soft contours of the case and bracelet of the 25 years old piece but with stylistic, modern enhancements.
The case is brought into contemporary with a slightly increased size – 39.1mm, Ref. SBGT241.
On the dial side, there are also some changes. The Grand Seiko name and logo is proudly present at 12 o’clock. Even more proudly presented is the five tipped star, present at 6 o’clock. The star is a symbol and statement of the staggering +5 to -5 seconds precision rate per year.
The dial hides a series of elements. The entire dial is decorated with embossed elements: “GS 9F” except for the line of 25 minutes index / five o’clock where the embossing reveals a 25 – twenty five years of calibre 9F.
The Grand Seiko SBGT241 has the case back decorated with a Grand Seiko lion emblem in 18k yellow gold. This version comes in a limited edition of 1500 pieces, available in the selected market from April 2018.
The Grand Seiko SBGV238 has another approach. The 40mm diameter case is an interpretation of the renown 44GS released in 1967. The case features 18k bezel and a see-through case-back. This lavish exhibition reveals the beauty of the 9F calibre. The Ref. SBGV238 is a limited edition of 600 pieces and will be available starting May 2018.
Calibre 9F 25th Anniversary Limited edition is plucked from another world. The hand-finished movement looks like a nicely decorated mechanical movement. Only the visible battery and coil remind us of the true nature of the 9F. The striped pattern is spread between the bridges, also terminated with a perfect beveling. The combination of jewels and electronic test point is not a common view – knitting the past and the future together.
Caliber 9F 25th Anniversary Limited Editions Specifications and Price
Caliber 9F 25th Anniversary Limited Editions:
Caliber 9F83 (SBGT241) / Caliber 9F82 (SBGV238)
Accuracy: ±5 seconds per year (at temperatures between 5°C and 35°C)
Stainless steel case and bracelet
18k yellow gold bezel (SBGV238)
High definition dual-curved sapphire crystal with anti-reflective coating
See-through screw case back (SBGV238), Screw-down crown (SBGT241)
Diameter: 39.1mm (SBGT241) / 40.0mm (SBGV238)
Thickness: 10.9mm (SBGT241) / 10.0mm (SBGV238)
Water resistance: 10 Bar. Magnetic resistance: 4,800 A/m
Approximate recommended retail price in Europe: €3,400 or US$3,400 (SBGT241) / €5,000 Euro or US$4,800 (SBGV238)
Limited Edition of 1,500 pcs (SBGT241) available starting with March/April / 600 pcs (SBGV238) available starting with May/June.