Inspired by the sports-explorer watches of the 20th century, Christopher Ward unveils a fresh three-watch collection
The luxurious-but-practical ‘sports-explorer’ has long been a staple of elite watchmaking.
And while Christopher Ward boasts an iconic dive collection (Trident) and a vintage-style retro-dive range (the C65s), it held back on joining the sports-explorer market until April 2021, with the launch of the Sealander collection: a set of go-anywhere, do-everything watches that can’t be beaten on quality or value. .
Sealanders are made for a world in flux. A world where home and office mingle, where jeans and trainers are the acceptable uniform of business; and where provenance trumps ostentation every time.
Christopher Ward CEO Mike France says: “A Sealander is the natural choice for the digital worker. If you make your living behind a laptop, consider yourself a citizen of the world and care deeply about the environment, you need a watch that reflects your values – and your style. The Sealanders provide it.”
“These pieces are as tough as a dive watch, but underplay it with more modest, bezel-free lines.
And they can be
worn absolutely anywhere.”
“If you make your living behind a laptop, consider yourself a citizen of the world and care about the environment, you need a watch that reflects your values
– and your style”
Each C63 Sealander has its own unique qualities but what unifies them is the fusion of high-level finishing, horological excellence and easy wearability.
“These pieces are as tough as a dive watch, but underplay it with more modest, bezel-free lines,” says Mike France. “They can be worn absolutely anywhere, and as work and home life continue to blend, that’s become more relevant than ever.”
There are three watches in the collection: an automatic three-hander, a GMT with a fixed bezel, and the super-light titanium Elite – each offering a wealth of features and level of detail far beyond their modest price points.
“All the watches have a clear, symmetrical look,” says Adrian Buchmann, head of product design. “The polished, or distressed 'ombré, dials and distinctive handsets on certain models also reference the C60 Trident Pro 600. Each case is machined and finished in exactly the same way too, and even the entry-point Automatic has the highest quality finish on its Sellita movement.”
Straps and more
The collection comes on a range of quick-release straps, including a fresh take on the Trident Pro’s steel bracelet, a super-sleek hybrid – half rubber, half Cordura® – and some office-friendly leather options.
Plus, there’s the first appearance of a #tide strap on a ‘series’ watch. Looking like a particularly sophisticated NATO, these woven nylon straps are made of discarded plastic hauled from the Pacific, then shredded, treated for UV damage, and reconstituted as watch straps. “It’s a complicated process,” Adrian says. “But the effort is totally worthwhile.”
Something that can be said of the whole collection.
is for you?
C63 Sealander Elite
Constructed in Grade 2 titanium, the C63 Sealander Elite chronometer is both ultra-light – just under 45g – and incredibly accurate: its certified-chronometer movement puts it in the top six percent of Swiss watches for accuracy.
And in a significant moment for Christopher Ward, it’s also the company’s first watch with a retractable crown: an ingenious feat of engineering that prevents the crown pressing into the top of your hand (something that cyclists and rock-climbers will appreciate).
C63 Sealander GMT
Like other Sealanders, the C63 Sealander
GMT is a go-anywhere, do-everything watch.
But what sets it apart is its classic ‘GMT-explorer’ design – which boasts a fixed 24-hour bezel. GMT-explorers were originally made for pro-cavers (AKA ‘spelunkers’) who could become disorientated after long periods in the dark. With no daylight to guide them, they set the GMT hand to their present time zone, using the fixed 24-hour bezel.
Of course, if you’re not going caving any time soon you can use it as a traditional GMT to monitor another time zone. Your watch.
C63 Sealander Automatic
Restrained rather than flashy, cleverly designed and detailed throughout, the C63 Sealander Automatic is a beautifully finished ‘tool’ watch that’s the essence of the Sealander collection.
Despite its entry-level price of £625, the Automatic has the same finessed and chamfered indexes, lume and highly finished movement under its exhibition caseback: making it the most inexpensive mechanical watch that Christopher Ward has ever made.
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