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RALF TECH - An All-Black livery for the Ralf Tech WRX

RALF TECH An All-Black livery for the Ralf Tech WRX

The brand is updating its bestselling WRX with a 100% electric version

“We’re following the same trajectory as cars: first mechanical, then hybrid and now 100% electric.” Not that Ralf Tech founder Frank Huyghe has any intention of swapping the marine world for the dry land of Le Castellet or Le Mans. The bedrock of the brand is the same but changes are afoot in one of the collections. And not just any collection but the flagship WRX, launched in 2007.

The WRX started out as an automatic, then a hybrid. It’s now 100% electric — not to be confused with plain-vanilla quartz. While the movement is equipped with a quartz oscillator it also incorporates a battery with a 12-year lifespan. This is an important condition for a watch that has been engineered for use by numerous special forces.

“We tell the people who buy an electric WRX not to come back for another ten years,“ jokes Huyghe. “When they do, we service the watch and replace the battery and the gaskets, even though they’ll be a long way from their end of life. It’s simply a precaution so that the military personnel who use the watch know they can do so with full confidence.”

Ralf Tech WRX :  une robe noire pour ses 15 ans

WRX Electric Black Pirates Shadow © RALF TECH

Fifteen years and counting

Designed in 2007 and developed with input from French Navy “Commando Hubert” combat divers, who adopted it as of 2010, the WRX was Ralf Tech’s first tool watch. Electric versions were introduced at end 2020. Now the brand is releasing three new iterations: Black Operator, Black Camo and Black Pirates Shadow.

They are driven by the new “Electric” movement, feature original sandwich dials and an innovative encapsulation system that guarantees water-resistance to 1,000 metres.

Black is Back !

WRX Electric Black Operator © RALF TECH

An optimised movement

The RTE001 movement is built on the hybrid “mechaquartz” movement that equips earlier generations of the WRX, and has been reengineered with fewer moving parts and a streamlined quartz power supply.

It delivers an autonomy of up to 100,000 hours or 12 years. Compare this with the 40-hour power reserve of most automatic watches or the two years of autonomy of conventional quartz watches.

Black is Back !

WRX Electric Black Camo © RALF TECH

An innovative water-resistance system

Also new, these latest black WRX feature an innovative encapsulation system that seals the back to the case for optimal water-resistance. Only Ralf Tech has the specific tools required to remove and refit the caseback, thus guaranteeing there will be no loss of water-resistance, even after multiple services.

Black is Back !

WRX Electric Black Pirates Shadow © RALF TECH

Heavy duty

The thickest scratchproof sapphire crystal (on a series-produced watch) at 5.9mm, a 10-mm case thickness at strategic points, a 47.5-mm diameter, broad straps secured by rip-resistant threaded pins, bezels in Ceramfine ceramic and titanium alloy for the most extreme conditions, guaranteed water-resistance to 1,000 metres for certain finishes and optimal functioning within a temperature range of -10° to +55 degrees Celsius: the new WRX certainly go the full mile. The only scaled-back feature is the price, unchanged since 2012. At between €2,000 and €2,200, the electric WRX retail at similar price points to the earlier hybrid versions.

 

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The brand

In 1996, professional diver Frank Huyghe created the RALF TECH brand: diving suits, buoyancy compensators, regulators, masks, etc. In 2003, on the strength of his personal experience, he designed a watch that could withstand the enormous pressures of the ocean depths and beat the World Record of deep diving. This was the RALF TECH WR1.

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