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Downsizing - Are watches getting smaller?

Downsizing Are watches getting smaller?

Here are four new models launched at Baselworld that shave millimetres off the size of their predecessors.

The trend towards smaller cases that we saw at the SIHH earlier this year has continued at Baselworld. A number of models with strong identities have now been launched with smaller case diameters and more classic designs. Here is a condensed A-Z:

Anonimo Epurato

There couldn’t be a more suitable name to encapsulate the trend. Depending on context, the Italian word Epurato means “purged”, “purified” or “streamlined”, at least two of which apply to the latest model from the brand. The Epurato has a 42mm diameter case, making it smaller than the Militare and Nautilo models, and a decidedly more refined aesthetic. The signature 4, 8 and 12 are still there, but the crown has been moved to a more conventional position at 3 o’clock. The sun-brushed anthracite dial and the hand-stitched leather strap match perfectly with the new polished bronze case. Inside is a Sellita SW200-1 automatic movement that offers a power reserve of 38 hours.

Are watches getting smaller?

Epurato © Anonimo

Hublot Big Bang Unico 42mm

Hublot is not just presenting a smaller watch but an entirely new movement as well. The new Big Bang Unico 42mm uses a modified version of the original HUB 1242 Unico calibre. The new calibre HUB 1280 has a number of improvements and four different patents have been filed for some of its innovations, including an oscillating seconds clutch. The movement has the same 30mm diameter as the HUB 1242 but is 1.3mm thinner, despite having more components (354 compared with 330). The new calibre is used in a new 42mm Big Bang case (down from 45mm) with a thickness of 14.5mm (instead of 15.45mm). Hublot is clearly positioning the new collection as unisex, with a choice of models in titanium, ceramic and king gold to match.

Are watches getting smaller?

Big Bang Unico 42mm © Hublot

Maurice Lacroix Aikon Automatic

Maurice Lacroix presented a complete range of Aikon watches fitted with automatic movements at Baselworld this year, from three-hand with date to chronograph with day-date. The base automatic model may only be 1mm smaller in diameter than the most recent model presented in the collection, the limited edition Aikon Bronze, but that single millimetre can still make a lot of difference. Unlike Hublot, Maurice Lacroix is pushing the masculine elements of its design and in particular the attention that has been given to the dials, with their Clou de Paris motif. Value for money is important to Maurice Lacroix, as proved by this model’s 200 metre water resistance, making it the most resistant of our selection.

Are watches getting smaller?

Aikon Automatic © Maurice Lacroix

Zenith Defy Classic

After the Defy El Primero 21 and the Defy Lab, Zenith comes down to Earth with a 41mm Defy Classic collection that offers a mix of the high-tech designs of the aforementioned technological marvels and a more classic approach. In concrete terms this means a choice between a blackened skeleton movement visible beneath a star-shaped open-worked dial or a sunburst blue closed dial. In all versions the case is in lightweight brushed titanium and the movement is the in-house Elite 670 base calibre, which for the first time is fitted with a silicon pallet-lever and escape-wheel. At 10.75mm case height, the Defy Classic is the thinnest model in our selection.

Are watches getting smaller?

Defy Classic © Zenith

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Born in Italy, crafted in Switzerland. The history of Anonimo watches is unmistakably linked to the pioneering exploits of Italy’s naval divers and alpini militare.

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From the outset, Hublot has embodied design and innovation that differ markedly from the established watchmaking order. With the impetus provided by Jean-Claude Biver, by 2004 these values had...

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Based in the Jura region of Switzerland, Maurice Lacroix has been producing fine Swiss timepieces for over 40 years and has developed 14 in-house movements over the past ten years.

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Ever since it was founded, Zenith has been cultivating the ability to open up new horizons by assisting with some of the most remarkable human achievements.

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