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Hands-On Debut: Urwerk UR-100 SpaceTime Watch In GunMetal

Hands-On Debut: Urwerk UR-100 SpaceTime Watch In GunMetal Hands-On

The Urwerk UR-100 SpaceTime watch was released a few months back in 2019, and the brand has now released a gunmetal version of its latest complication model. The surprisingly wearable 14mm-thick UR-100 SpaceTime was initially introduced in steel and titanium, though this new gunmetal edition looks a bit darker and more fitting. Urwerk dubbed this as the UR-100 as a nod back to the brand’s early days in the mid-1990s with its original watch, the UR-101/102. This Gunmetal model is the third edition of the UR-100 so far, each of which has been made in 25 pieces. Of note, the UR-100 is something of an entry level model for the brand at under $50,000.

Hands-On Debut: Urwerk UR-100 SpaceTime Watch In GunMetal Hands-On

Hands-On Debut: Urwerk UR-100 SpaceTime Watch In GunMetal Hands-On

So, what is SpaceTime, exactly? Well, the standard time is told via the “usual” satellite time display (the Urwerk take on a wandering hours mechanism) with arrow pointing to minutes and hour on satellite display. With three red-tipped arrows in total, the SpaceTime has two functions that can be read on either sides of the case at 10 and 2 o’clock. When the minute hand makes the full 60-minute path, it actually jumps over to the 10 o’clock cut-out register, which tells the the distance (in kilometers) traveled on earth as it spins on its axis at the equator. This is is shown via the 20-minute scale that measures 555 kilometers. Across the case at 2 o’clock is another 20-minute scale that measures the journey of the earth around the sun in that time, which is 35,740 kilometers.

Hands-On Debut: Urwerk UR-100 SpaceTime Watch In GunMetal Hands-On

While not really practical or revolutionary when you consider how they operate in 20-minute increments, the SpaceTime complications are fun without being over-the-top, which is quite something given that we’re talking about an Urwerk. Still, it’s true. The SpaceTime registers are thin with small white text. The relatively slim case and the (restrained for Urwerk) avant-garde design actually makes for one of the most wearable Urwerks in recent memory. This may not be how everyone feels, though. In fact, when David Bredan reviewed the UR-105 Kryptonite (another favorite of mine), he wrote:

“…Urwerk has, it seems to me, gotten to a point where it felt like it should make a watch for the mature collector of the brand and/or other crazy watches. Don’t get me wrong, I agree that in images the UR-105 Kryptonite looks as awesome as an SR-71 Blackbird, but in reality – and yet more so on the wrist on an average day running errands in the city – it is as stealthy as a black slab with some slats on it can be (pretty discreet, that is). And that, to me, at first is sort of like missing the point. It’s like a quiet Ferrari.”

Hands-On Debut: Urwerk UR-100 SpaceTime Watch In GunMetal Hands-On Hands-On Debut: Urwerk UR-100 SpaceTime Watch In GunMetal Hands-On

The case measures 41mm-wide, 49.7mm lug-to-lug, and 14mm-thick, which make for dimensions that only add to my point about wearability. The bubbled sapphire dome crystal is a throwback too the early Urwerk models and works well with the red-pointed arrows that curve downward, as well. I am a big fan of the Gunmetal case with its matte sandblasted finish. It just looks right.

Hands-On Debut: Urwerk UR-100 SpaceTime Watch In GunMetal Hands-On

Hands-On Debut: Urwerk UR-100 SpaceTime Watch In GunMetal Hands-On

The UR-100 shows off what is one of the more interesting parts of its movement by exposing the pyramid-shaped hour displays via the aluminum three-arm carousel. This could hinder the ease of reading the time, but the hours not in use are covered by the added architectural bridges. According to Urwerk, it took two years of R&D to design the UR-100.

Hands-On Debut: Urwerk UR-100 SpaceTime Watch In GunMetal Hands-On Hands-On Debut: Urwerk UR-100 SpaceTime Watch In GunMetal Hands-On

Inside is the Urwerk Caliber 12.01 movement, which utilizes a “planetary flat turbine” system that also goes by Windfäng, or “air trap.” This is a shock-reduction system that becomes clear when looking at the caseback, which reveals the large rotor with drilled holes that is regulated by this turbine. In addition, the baseplates are done in the anti-magnetic alloy ARCAP, which is a feature Urwerk uses regularly. The caliber 12.01 operates at 28,800 vph and has a 48-hour power reserve.

Hands-On Debut: Urwerk UR-100 SpaceTime Watch In GunMetal Hands-On Hands-On Debut: Urwerk UR-100 SpaceTime Watch In GunMetal Hands-On

The Urwerk UR-100 SpaceTime in Gunmetal is a compelling watch for reasons beyond the fun addition of the SpaceTime complications. I wasn’t prepared for those reasons being about practicality when considering the brand, but here we are. The wearable proportions, avant-garde design that has Urwerk DNA but isn’t as “out there” as models like the EMC Time Hunter or UR-T8, and mid-five-figure price point make for a package that will appeal to many both theoretically and in terms of an actual purchase. Considering it’s limited to 25 pieces, I will venture to say there will be more people interested than available watches. The Urwerk UR-100 SpaceTime Gunmetal watch is priced at $49,000.  You can learn more at urwerk.com.

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  • Ugo

    while Urwerk is definitely not my genre, i don’t actually despise this.
    seems reasonably designed and is not too much of a “watch me watch”.
    nonetheless, i’m not sure to have understood the two complications at 10 and 2: the red arrow in the time sector (i suppose) will take 60 minutes to go from 0 to 60, while the two other windows are large only 20 minutes: does it means that i’ll have the “distance traveled” indication only for 20 minutes every hour?

    • Vlad

      Very interesting article. Except for astronomical information: Earth journey around the Sun is not 35,740 km, but 940 million km long. (1 Sideral Year) In article is correctly described marking on the watch that in 20 minutes covers distance of 555 km. (1,665 km in 1 hour). In 24 hours = 39,960 km, which is very close to circumference of the earth (40,075 km.)
      Otherwise this is a very informative and excellent article about UR-100 watch.
      Regards, Vlad

  • IanE

    The basic watch is great; however, that finish, to my eyes at least, makes it look like a cheap kickstarter or Seven Friday release. Well, chacun a son gout!

  • Craig A Clark

    I appreciate the engineering work in their pieces, and this is no exception. It’s a bit more restrained than others I’ve seen from them, but it does still come in to the category of watch that you will look a but special for wearing, because it does look like a contraption on the wrist, rather than a watch.

    Accepting it for what it is, impressive stuff and no mistake.

  • SuperStrapper

    I’d wear the hell out of this watch. The Torpedo will always have my heart but this really does look like an URWERK that can be worn regularly.

  • Independent_George

    This is cool AF. Wish I had something more substantive to say about this watch, but I don’t.

  • cluedog12

    When a few of these Urwerks were available online at that other watch blog, the thought went through my mind to purchase one, wear it a few times to get it out of my system, then flip it at cost to somebody who can actually afford it. Real life (capital gains taxes, living in Canada, doubts that I could flip it at cost) gets in the way. Sadly I’m too “sensible and realistic” to ever own this watch, but in a better world, this would be a status watch for those who could afford it. The Nautilus and Pepsi have had enough time in the spotlight.

    • Independent_George

      Ha! I actually had, briefly, the same exact idea (scheme), and figured if I “lost” anything, it would be interest payments, (cause I’d have to max out the Visa card). But thinking about it, wasn’t sure if I could even sell at cost. I asked some people who sell high-end, haute watches, and most believed I could sell at cost, but that I had to be prepared that it might take months, and in the meantime, meeting the interest payments would go on and on . . .

  • Pete L

    Seems a lot more wearable (and affordable) than most of their pieces but they are a bit of a one trick pony. Nice to have something a bit different but these are not purchase on a whim money for most.

  • mach2guy

    Never would I ever consider strapping that thing to…

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