Based on a 1970s concept, the Zenith El Primero 410 is a surprisingly contemporary watch that brings together utility and elegance. It boasts the impressive automatic column-wheel chronograph movement with moon phase and calendar functions, which was briefly discontinued by Zenith at the beginning of 2000.
The limited edition of the model features 500 pieces, retailing for £14,600 each. The watch can be ordered in steel or rose gold and has a beautiful tonneau-shaped case attached to an alligator strap. It is worth mentioning the historical and technical significance of the watch, stemming from the original prototype it is based upon. Copying the dial layout and overall styling of the original model, the Zenith El Primero 410 is substantially larger than its predecessor, although some of the key elements remain the same – the placement of subdials, calendar apertures, and tachymeter.
One of the benefits of the larger case is that it displays elegantly the highly-detailed dial without compromising the strict, clean design of the original model. Conceptually, the new watch is more fluid and refined in terms of layout, fitting well contextually in the lifestyle of the contemporary gentleman by combining luxury and functionality.
The Zenith El Primero 410 runs at 5 Hz with 390 components, which are visible through the sapphire case. There are three distinctive functions in addition to the basic timekeeping. It boasts two dials – the main one has a 30-minute register at 3 o’clock and a 12-hour register at 6 o’clock. The calendar function sits well within the overall layout of the case without compromising the readability of the dial.
An interesting feature is the moon phase function, which sits at 6 o’clock in the 12-hour register. The steel blue background makes the golden moon set stand out with subtle elegance. This is the only colour element on the vintage-inspired watch and it adds a touch of trendiness to the conservative design.