April 19, 2009
by Ariel Adams
The last few years have been a bit of a revitalization period for Swiss Ebel watches. The prominent brand was growing a bit staid, and it needed some new exciting watches, especially men’s watches. So it brushed the dust off of it’s classic hexagon case (you know, it roughly has six sides), and started releasing some new models. The new and larger watches are typified by the case shape and five screws, often with then faceted hands. The good looks of the watches combined with some serious marketing efforts have really helped Ebel out. One of the things that I really like about their designs is the simplicity. A few of the watches are a bit more “out there” in appeal, but this Classic Hexagon GMT watch really epitomizes simple good looks. Seeing the watch itself is the true convincing element to appreciating the timepiece. The case is slightly rounded not to look flat, and the size of the larger version is impressive. Further, the polish and finish (bezel and much of the face are polished while the case is satin finished) alone are enough to communicate this watch’s luxury status.
My favorite part of the watch is the integration of the second time zone display. In the top center of the watch you have a big date window that is well integrated, and then below, you have the large subsidiary dial for the second time zone. In a sense, this is a non-traditional GMT because it is not represented in 24 hour time. The likely effect of this will make you sometimes a bit confused about exactly what time it is in the other timezone you have (is it one hour ahead or 13 hours ahead?) You’ll probably just need to make a quick mental note of that when you are traveling. So the good news is that it is displayed with its own little face; complete with a minute hand. On my GMT watches you need to use the minute hand of the main dial. Here, Ebel places two minute hands, so reading the second timezone is just like having another watch in your watch. This is of course not the first time this has been done, but it is done in a pleasant and legible manner here. Further, the overall look of the watch is such that it will still look handsome in the years to come. In my opinion, this watch is best suited to travel, unless you like to keep track of another time zone on a daily basis.
The watch contains the Ebel 18K-750 4N GMT Swiss movement in a large 45.4mm wide 18k rose gold case (the actual dial is about 37mm wide) . The case is also available in steel, with the face in black or white, with steel or gold hour markers. You’ll also notice the choice between hour markers and roman numerals for the second time zone sudbial, and don’t miss the big date complication. The black (I believe brown is also available) alligator strap is uniquely made to fit the curvature of the case. Thus, there are a lot of models to suit your taste. The rose gold version is of course going to be much more expensive (but you have to admit is looks great with the black face). This is one of the nicest new Ebel watches in my opinion. Prices start at about $3,500 and top out at about $12,000 for the gold version.
See Ebel watches on eBay here.See Ebel watches on Amazon here. [phpbay]ebel hexagon | ebel classic | ebel gmt, num, “”, “”[/phpbay]