Seiko has just released three new diver’s timepieces that go back to polar roots in which the Prospex was born. The heritage models that were created more than 50 years ago are getting a modern update as special editions, with stunning new dials that reflect what made the first Prospex models so special.
Seiko’s reputation for creating reliable and sturdy diving watches first began in the 1960s and 1970’s when the timepieces were chosen by researchers and adventurers on their expeditions to the north and south poles. The latest Prospex Divers models released are modern re-interpretations of three famous diver’s timepieces released in the 1960s and 1970s. The design of these three special edition models takes inspiration from the glaciers that form the landscape and seascapes of the Arctic and Antarctic. Each of the different dial colours is taken from a different shade of glacial ice, that ranges from deep blue to white. The three timepieces released are a part of Seiko’s Prospex Save the Ocean Series.
The first of the special edition models are the deep-blue dial version. This model is a reference to Seiko’s first ever diver’s watch, released in 1965. The watch became iconic and proved its dependability when members of the Japanese Antarctic Research Expedition wore the model from 1966 to 1969. This latest rendition of the 1965 classic is referenced as SPB297. The model comes in a 40.5mm stainless steel case and bracelet. The dial is grain-like to reflect the glaciers and has a beautiful contrast against the lumbrite filled hour indices and hands. The watch features a black bezel with white markings, which furthers the contrasting effect and certainly makes it stand out.
The next model is the reference SPB299. This model is a re-interpretation of the 1968 diver’s watch, which was the first timepiece made by Seiko to feature a 300m water resistance rating, along with a 10-beat automatic movement. The modern-day version of this classic comes in a 42mm stainless steel case and bracelet, with a navy blue bezel. The dial is more ice blue bringing a closer link to its origins.
The hour indices and hands are filled with lumbrite which gives a white appearance, adding to the refreshing coolness of the dial. The last model in this Ocean Special Editions series is the re-interpretation of the diver’s classic made in the 1970s. This original model was worn by the Japanese adventurer Naomi Uemura during the years 1974 to 1976 when we completed a 12, 500km solo dog-sled run from Greenland to Alaska. The Seiko diver’s timepiece after this run surely proved its strength, endurance, and reliability.
The latest rendition of this classic timepiece features the same characteristic case that the 1970s classic had. The modern update (reference SPB301) has a 42.7mm stainless steel case and bracelet. The dial is white reflecting the snow in which Naomi Uemura trekked through. A contrasting blue bezel is used which makes the aesthetic appearance of this timepiece quite beautiful.
All three of the Ocean Special Edition models feature the calibre 6R35 movement. The movement operates at a frequency of 21,600 VpH and gives out a power reserve of approximately 70 hours.
The special Ocean series program that these watches fall under, delivers financial support to Seiko’s chosen marine charities. Three modern re-interpretations of classic timepieces, these Ocean Special Edition models evoke emotion while also having historical ties to artic exploration. The models will be available from June 2022 from Seiko Boutiques and selected retail stores worldwide.