Zenith is committed to the total renewal of its “Pilot” watches, the trademark that the Swiss brand has owned since 1904 and which makes it the only watchmaking brand in the world to display the “Pilot” inscription on the dial.
Among the novelties presented at the world’s largest speciality fair, there were three new models that caught our attention and which we are going to talk about here.
The new watch, presented in a completely redesigned new case measuring 40mm in diameter and 12.9mm thick in stainless steel or ceramic, stands out for its round shape with a big smooth bezel and large lugs, essentially featuring a brushed finish on the steel version. and in matte blasted in the ceramic version. Domed sapphire crystal, open case back, onion crown and 100m water resistance.
The black dial features a horizontal stripe pattern inspired by the fuselage of old planes. Arabic hour markers, sword hands filled with Super-LumiNova, a date window at 6 o’clock with a horizontal luminous marker above it and, of course, the inscription from “Pilot”.
Inside is the high-beating El Primero 3620 automatic movement running at 36,000 Vph and offering up to 60 hours of power reserve.
Both variants are offered with two straps, one in black rubber with a Cordura texture and the other in green rubber, with prices ranging from CHF 7,500 for the steel variant and CHF 9,500 for the ceramic version.
Pilot Big Date Flyback
The new chronograph comes with exactly the same case design as the new Pilot Automatic, except for the necessary adaptations to its nature, with regard to slightly larger dimensions, 42.5mm in diameter by 14.3mm in thickness and the inclusion of two pushers rectangular buttons next to the crown.
Like the regular version of the new Pilot, the Flyback chronograph version is available in stainless steel or ceramic.
On the dial, everything changes, featuring two large counters at the 3-9 o’clock positions and a big date window at 6 o’clock, which works in the form of two internal discs that change at a flash speed of just 0.02 seconds. And if the ceramic version maintains the monochrome colour scheme on the dial, the same does not happen in the steel version, featuring red chronograph hands and a three-colour ring – blue, green and yellow on the 30-minute counter.
Inside, it comes equipped with the automatic movement El Primero 3652, also with high rotation, which offers up to 60 hours of power reserve.
Both variants are also offered with two straps and prices vary between CHF 11,400 and CHF 13,400 for the steel or ceramic option respectively.
Defy Revival Shadow
But Zenith’s revelations are not just new models, there is also a revival of the historic Defy model launched in 1969, this time in a full titanium version with the reference A3642.
Thus, the most recent Defy wears a titanium case of 37mm in diameter with the traditional silhouette of 8 case sides and 14 bezel sides, sapphire glass front and back, screw-down crown and 300m of water resistance.
On the black matte dial, applied square fluted indexes, faceted sword hands and lollipop central seconds hand all filled with beige Super-LumiNova and a date window at 4 1/2 o’clock.
Inside it comes equipped with the Caliber Elite 670 with an automatic movement that beats 28,800 Vph and offers up to 50 hours of power reserve.
The watch is offered with a ladder bracelet priced at €8,000.
We liked the new Pilot watches, which work very well on the wrist, but we had some difficulty identifying which one we liked best, the more versatile steel version for day-to-day use or the ceramic version with a more stealthy look.
As far as the Defy Revival Shadow is concerned, as soon as we laid eyes on it it was the one that captivated us the most, however, after trying it on our wrist and seeing its “featherweight”, it almost made us wish that it had gone in steel with Black PVD coated as it just doesn’t feel, as someone else who was also trying it said, “it looks like a toy that will break at any moment”.