I've written about Raymond Weil's popular Nabucco collection at least two times prior to this hands-on experience. In fact the last time I covered the collection was with another hands-on experience going over some of the pre-2011 models here. I liked wearing the watches even though the designs in some ways felt a little bit derivative for the price. Many Raymond Weil watch designs are a bit (or a lot) derivative, but that's actually OK. They are a brand that doesn't seek to reinvent the wheel, but rather offer their own version of it.
The Nabucco is their most popular sport watch, but not their only one. It seems as though each year they release a new version of the watch. This year the new Nabucco is simply named the "Nabucco Steel And Titanium Black Dial Rubber Bracelet," and is reference number 7800-TIR-00207. The specific title of the watch is less than sophisticated but you get the idea. With all their operatic names (literally) I don't know why Raymond Weil wouldn't want to give each new piece a little extra character.
The name is however descriptive in terms of what is unique about this piece. This is neither the first steel or titanium Nabucco watch, but it is the first one with a case that uses both metals. Certain parts of the case are steel, while others are in titanium. Why? Well it sounds cool. Also, there is the potential to have some weight savings while still using steel for areas that Raymond Weil wants to apply with a high polish such as the bezel. Then the case side material could be titanium.
Still in a hefty 46mm wide case (WR to 200 meters) the Nabucco sits large and proud on the wrist. It offers no apology for its size or stature. It is a very American styled sports watch with a bold sentiment and snazzy persona. The mixture of black and white with a dash of yellow on the dial is pleasant. Not super unique, but very pleasant. This Nabucco actually represents a slightly cleaned up dial compared to ones from other years. The face is a smooth black with no texture, and emphasis is placed on the markers and chronograph subdials.
A major difference (if you want to call it that) is the adoption of a Roman numeral 12 o'clock hour marker versus an Arabic one. The new marker looks nice and certainly ups the sophistication level of the piece, but I have seen that Roman numeral 12 before. Where? Right here on the Cartier Calibre watch. The watch also has a new minute marker track around the periphery of the dial. This time numbers are placed at five minute increments above the hour markers. That feature is also something which is on the Cartier Caliber dial. Raymond Weil has taken inspiration from Rolex and Cartier in the past (as well as other brands) so this is expected. I don't really mind the borrowing, but I like to notice it as it is interesting to see what watches influence other watches.
Inside the watch is again a base Swiss ETA chronograph movement. It is the 7753 automatic I believe. The pusher on the left side of the case is to adjust the date. The overall fit and finish of the Nabucco is good, and the complex case design is a benefit to it. I like all the little details and the less-than-boring design. One thing I should point out is that the watch is actually MORE legible in person than it is in the marketing images. The hands contrast a bit better against that chronograph subdials than it is made to appear in the images on Raymond Weil's website.
Attached to the watch is a black rubber strap that is given an alligator print. You don't see that too often, but it works pretty well for the theme. Overall this is one of the most handsome Raymond Weil Nabucco watches from the last few years. If you like the idea of it then this would be one to consider. Price is $4,500 for the reference 7800- TIR-00207 model.
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