The Japanese watchmaker Citizen has presented its two latest concept models from the Promaster series which are considered as the new flagship watches of the brand. Both upcoming models, Satellite Wave Air and Altichron Cirrus, (which will be available for sale in September 2013 and spring of 2014, respectively) are equipped with the technology that allows them to have impeccable accuracy and to be powered by solar energy. The unprecedented accuracy in question derives from the fact that these watches receive radio signals from a series of satellites which are capable of getting the signal to the timepiece anywhere on the Earth, regardless of the wearer’s location. As Citizen unveiled, the upcoming models are utilizing an improved version of the technology which was premiered in Apleseed XIII watch released in 2011.
Satellite Wave Air
New Satellite Wave Air model is basically an improved version of the famous Appleseed XIII model which was released in 990 copies and sold out months before its release two years ago. Unlike that model which was made with a housing that combined ceramics with steel, the new version comes in a fully titanium case. This makes it the first metal light powered watch that receives signals from the orbiting satellites. The inclusion of the case made completely of titanium was possible due to the modifications of the timekeeper’s antenna. As the representatives of Citizen stated, it is also the top model in its category when it comes to the speed of the corrections, since the reception of the signal lasts between four and twenty seconds. This is a dramatic improvement when compared to the archetype model required about a minute on the average to connect with one of the satellites.
A round case of Satellite Wave Air watch is 49.5 mm wide which makes it even bigger than its predecessor first presented a couple of years ago. However it has the reduced thickness of 18.8 mm (Appleseed XII was over 20 mm thick) which is supposed to make it a bit more comfortable to wear. At the front, a multi-layered dial of new Promaster Eco-Drive Satellite Wave Air is protected with domed and glare-proofed sapphire crystal, while its water resistance measures to quite respectable 200 meters. As far as the functions are concerned, they mostly match the ones featured in its precursor. The redesigned dial of the newcomer is likewise with two sub-dials and a date indication at the bottom. Moreover, it keeps the same overall appearance with a black multi-layered dial inspired by fan blades on an aircraft, but utilizes different manner to display all the features that are enabled with its new H909 Japanese quartz caliber. These features are a perpetual calendar, 24-hour representation of time, a power reserve indication and a world time feature with 26 major cities.
Three Versions with Coated Titanium Cases
The upcoming flagship model by Citizen will be launched in three variations, with one of the verisons issued in a limited edition (though it is expected that two regular ones will not be that numerous as well). Each of three versions will have a housing made of Super Titanium which is the brand’s patented alloy of titanium that features improved strength combined with the reduced weight. The characteristics of Super Titanium will be additionally improved with the use of the brand’s proprietary Duratect coating and DLC coating. Both are used to enhance the hardness of material and its resistance to scratches, but while the former is clear, the latter one gives the titanium a shade of black.
The first version of the model bears the reference number CC1054-56E. It has a titanium case with DLC coating on sides and a bracelet in the same material with the coating on inner links. This version has green accents on its dial, similarly to Appleseed XIII. The second regular model features DLC coating on the whole case, orange details on the black face and a new type of rubber band reinforced with titanium inserts. The third version of the watch will be issued in a limited edition consisting of 500 pieces. It will include the same dial as the first one and the same kind of strap as the second version. However, it will be significantly different to the regular models, since its case will be coated with a special kind of coating which requires a host of expertise and labor and which ultimately gives the titanium case a distinctive pearly white appearance. As the initial reports indicate, the restricted version will not be available for sale in the United States. The price of series-produced versions is expected to be around $2,500 which is significantly lower than it was the case with Apleseed which has the price of $4,000.
The second flagship concept model unveiled by Citizen is Altichron Cirrus whose release is scheduled for the spring of 2014. It is the timekeeper that continues the successful tradition of Altichron models which have been on the market ever since 1989. As the name of the model suggests, it includes an altimeter which displays the current altitude, but does not have a chronograph as the last part of the name indicates. Supplied with the latest technology, the new Altichron Cirrus will be able to measure heights up to 32,000 feet (or 10,000 meters which is over a kilometer higher than any mountain on the Earth) and depths up to 1,000 feet (or 300 meters which is not completely functional since the featured water resistance of the watch measures to 200 meters below the surface). The altimeter/depth meter feature is accompanied with a compass function and both of these features are made independently from the timekeeping function, so it can be used simultaneously with it. Among other traits, the watch will likewise be with a date display and a power reserve indication.
Naturally, as a part of the brand’s Eco-Drive concept models, it will also include a solar powered quartz movement which is corrected with the signals received from satellites. The watch will be placed inside a large round titanium housing whose diameter will be whooping 51.5 mm. It will have a multi-layered black dial with all sorts of colorful accents. A nice touch by Citizen is certainly the fact that there will be two versions of the watch, one with altimeter that uses feet as the measurement unit (the reference number BN4045-09E with caliber J290) and the other one with meter indication (the BN5035-08E with caliber J280). As the Japanese watchmaker announced, Altichron Cirrus will also be issued in a limited edition (which will likewise consist of two versions, one with feet and the other with meter indications). Just like it will be the case with Satellite Wave Air model, the restricted version of Altichron Cirrus will have the mentioned pearly white coating on its titanium casing. There is another similarity when it comes to the attachments, since Satellite Wave Air model will also have a “liquid rubber” strap which is basically poly-urethane with titanium reinforcements.