BaselWorld 2011 had a large selection of watches you can wear from brands that normally make watches most people cannot afford. While the ultra-high end certainly had its place, many of the watches on my BaselWorld Top 11 watches list were in the "I could feasibly save up for this" range. One of them was this surprise pieces from Corum called the Admiral's Cup Legend 42. It comes in Legend 42 and 38 styles - which refers to the size of the case. Of course the 42 is for me.
The case design is based on the iconic Admirals' Cup collection that Corum has been pushing lately. They have transformed the sport watch into a formal watch - and the metamorphosis feels natural. The case has that 12-sided shape and comes in steel or 18k rose gold. The bezel is polished while much of the rest of the case is brushed. There is just enough sport to the design to make it feel not boring, while much of it is taken from the other Admiral's Cup pieces. The 42mm wide size is smaller than the 44mm wide case that most of the AC watches come in. But the relatively thin bezel and clear face give the piece a good stature.
I love the dial and applaud Corum's ability to make it both decorative and legible. As a nod to the AC collection, the boat pennant flat images are in thin outlines around the side of the watch on the flange ring. The baton hour indicators are polished but don't blend in with the dial. The hands are lume covered and stick out for very good legibility. I think you'll really appreciate the engraved vertical texturing on the dial as well. Not that a few other dial styles are available, and more will come soon I am guessing.
Insertion of the date window is done nicely as it does not require the removal of an hour indicator. It also looks classy with a little polished metal fame. The watch has a subsidiary seconds dial that reminds us of those on many other AC watches. This one is placed a bit close to the center of the watch, but that doesn't bother me at all. I like the design of it as Corum is here able to inject a bit of subtle sportiness. The dial is available in a few tones, seen here silvered or in anthracite. The use of "60" as the 12 o'clock indicator looking all nice in polished metal is a great example of how the Legend is a smooth transition from sport to slick.
Corum uses their caliber CO395 which is a base Swiss ETA 2895 automatic. Corum decorates it and uses a custom rotor. On the steel models the rotor is in steel, while in the gold cased version the rotor is done in 18k gold. The back of the watch reminds of a the Corum Admiral's Cup Deep Hull (and progeny). Corum clearly used that aesthetic in the AC Legend - which is alright with me.
I am really not sure when the last time Corum offered the Admiral's Cup on a bracelet. It has been a while. The Legend 42 comes on a steel or gold bracelet or an alligator strap. my choice is the Corum Admiral's Cup Legend 42 with the silvered face on the steel bracelet. A really great formal or casually nice watch that embodies the spirit of the Admiral's Cup theme with a look you can wear daily. Prices for the Legend 42 start at $3,600.