Following our last article with the press release of the Urwerk Lotus, we write a hands on review of this watershed piece. After an afternoon of intimate fellowship with the two watches, we have heard varying critcs of the highly anticipated URWERK, and notably, some have said that the Lotus is a feminine piece but not a ladies watch. Others have said that it is a hit and poised to bring in customers of the approximately 40 percent of the ladies luxury watch market. Of course, we took it as our duty to ask around for opinions during the launch event, and in particular for the opinions of every lovely lady we could speak to and their ideas have helped shape our view. So what do we think about this piece?
Hands on afternoon with the UR-106
Of the two, our favourite is the black PVC treated titanium model. The black leather and full black case contrasts adequately with the green luminous markers and the overall effect is a brilliant rebel watch. The case captures the essence of URWERK’s watches, with the satellite display, mechanical layout and engine like caseback. The case design is adequately sized and ergonomically engineered for a small wrist.
Apart from the well known satellite disc design, an interesting point to note is the reduction from 4 hour discs to 3 discs. The reduction reflects a more economical use of power as well as a reduction in overall size. Apart from the use of a polish finished titanium case, the “Lotus” is fit with diamonds on its bezel. While some of us are used to the idea that diamonds are an easy way for ladies watches with the notion of ‘bling’ attached to it, Martin A Frei, URWERK’s founder argues that the use of diamonds is to create texture rather than just pure bling.
The Watch that men want for their ladies
A new category in luxury watch purchases, as mysoginistic as it seems, is the watch men want for their ladies. More palatably put, these are watches that would let men (who matter) or anyone, look up to the women who wear them. The watches are not only attention grabbers, for the interesting case design and unique dial layout, but also sophisticated accessories for the successful woman.
A watch that ladies want for themselves
But let us get out of the victorian age and realise that this timepiece is in and of itself a piece which women would want for themselves. The unique selling proposition and differentiation factors in the time display format, coupled with the setting of diamonds, size up to an irresistibly one of a kind timepiece that doubles as a statement accessory. While it may be more desirable for the adventurous women of today, it is also women of this category who can, quite frankly, be able to afford this statement timepiece.
Is it a unisex timepiece?
From the perspective of asian men like myself, with small wrists, the URWERK UR-106 seems to be an adequate downsize for the smaller sized male. While the white maybe overtly feminine, the black design may in fact be interpreted as a mid-sized men’s timepiece, minus the diamonds of course. The beauty of the timepiece is not in its overt transformation to a purely elegant and feminine timepiece, but an amalgamation of traits of masculine watches with the elegance of a ladies timepieces. We find that the Lotus is a versatile timepiece which brings out the masculine side of the lady, interpreted through the technically retrofitted design and sporty colour combination.
For comparison purposes, we have a shot of the UR-106 Lotus with the UR-105 TF. The TF is slightly larger given its 4 satellite disc layout. The UR-105 Lotus is smaller due to the downsized movement and also a more tapered case design near the crown. Nonetheless, this couple watch pairing is something we thought of spontaneously, that it would be a great idea for a couple to pull off two URWERKs at any given event/time.
The UR-106 is priced at S$160,800; something to cringe about given the many digits, but nonetheless, a fun timepiece with serious engineering at a serious price. For us at Deployant, we are very much pleased with this interpretation of the masculine URWERK designs and are eager to see this timepiece on the wrists of collectors.