Sitting right near the very top of the vast assortment of watches that make up the modern Citizen lineup are the brand’s “The Citizen” models, which take many of the Japanese manufacturer’s signature technologies and render them in their highest possible forms. A few months ago, Citizen unveiled a limited-edition version of The Citizen that featured a gold-colored Super Titanium case and a black washi paper dial adorned with gold leaf accents. Now, as its most recent release of 2023, the Japanese brand has unveiled The Citizen AQ4100-65W, which offers a similar concept to the previous limited edition from a few months ago; however, this new model features a platinum-colored finish and a white Tosa washi paper dial that is inspired by the appearance of freshly fallen snow.

On a fundamental level, The Citizen AQ4100-65W is essentially the same watch as the black and gold The Citizen AQ4103-16E that was announced back in August of this year. Swap out gold for platinum, black for white, and a leather strap for a matching metal bracelet, and you more-or-less have the general concept of this latest new release, although there are certainly a few additional details worth mentioning. Similar to its black and gold sibling, The Citizen AQ4100-65W measures 38.3mm in diameter by 12.2mm thick with angular lugs, a domed sapphire crystal, and a solid screw-down caseback that is engraved with The Citizen collection’s signature eagle emblem. Just as before, a signed crown sits at 3 o’clock, while an additional push piece that is used for setting the perpetual calendar is recessed into the side of the case at the 2 o’clock location, and water resistance for The Citizen AQ4100-65W comes in at 100 meters to protect it against all forms of daily moisture contact.

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Like its black and gold counterpart from a few months ago, The Citizen AQ4100-65W is also crafted from the brand’s Super Titanium alloy, although rather than featuring a yellow gold surface finish, this new model showcases a platinum Duratect coating that provides the metal with a bright shimmering white color, while also increasing its surface hardness up to 1,000 Hv (approximately five times harder than traditional stainless steel). Similar to gold, platinum is an incredibly soft and heavy material, and the concept behind these two limited-edition The Citizen models is to create watches that have the same appearance as gold or platinum, while simultaneously offering the total opposite performance properties. The platinum Duratect coating on The Citizen AQ4100-65W will be significantly brighter and more lustrous than the natural gray hue of titanium, yet the watch will also be incredibly lightweight and scratch-resistant like all of the brand’s Super Titanium models.

As with its black and gold sibling, the handcrafted washi paper dial is the real party piece of The Citizen AQ4100-65W, and while it features a similar overall style with baton-shaped markers, dauphine hands, and a date window at 3 o’clock, the style of the hour markers has been slightly updated to better complement its brighter colorway. Rather than being black and gold, the dial of The Citizen AQ4100-65W features a white Tosa washi paper surface that is adorned with platinum flakes in an asymmetric pattern. As before, the platinum flakes are applied using a traditional Japanese decorative technique called Sunago-maki, where artisans place platinum leaf into a bamboo tube and then individually sprinkle the flakes onto the surface of the dial. While the texture of the Tosa washi paper helps create the dial’s snow-inspired aesthetic, washi paper screens have a long history of being used to let natural light into living spaces, and the material’s semi-transparent structure allows light to pass through the dial and reach the solar panels that reside below it.

Powering The Citizen AQ4100-65W is the Eco-Drive Cal. A060 high-accuracy solar quartz movement, which is the same caliber that you will find inside its black and gold sibling. While Citizen makes a vast assortment of different light-powered movements within its greater Eco-Dive series, the Cal. A060 is a completely different creation compared to what you will find inside the brand’s entry-level models. Like all Citizen Eco-Drive movements, the Cal. A060 is capable of powering itself with any light source, although it also includes an energy-saving feature that will allow it to run for up to a year and a half in complete darkness. Additionally, along with featuring a perpetual calendar, an independently adjustable hour hand, and an impressive accuracy rating of just -/+5 seconds per year, the Caliber A060 also includes an impact-detection feature that locks the movement to protect it from shocks, and this gets paired with an automatic hand correction function to ensure perfect alignment should the hands ever get knocked out of place or deviate from the correct time.

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Rather than being paired with a leather strap like the black and gold model from a few months ago, The Citizen AQ4100-65W is fitted with a matching bracelet that is crafted from Super Titanium and given the same platinum Duratect coating that is used for the case of the watch. Based on the photos, the bracelet appears to be a solid step above what you find on most Citizen models, and it features a flat five-link design that consists of two thinner polished center links sitting between three larger sections that have a brushed finish. All of the bracelet’s components are solid, the removable links are secured by screws, and the signed clasp is made from machined parts with a double push-button release. Although the clasp doesn’t offer any type of integrated micro-adjustment system, the images of the bracelet depict it with a pair of half-links near the clasp, so owners should still be able to achieve a comfortable fit if they happen to find themselves between link sizes.

Categorically speaking, The Citizen watches are significantly more expensive than the brand’s standard-collection models, and as one of the more premium offerings from the series with a handmade Tosa washi paper dial adorned with flakes of platinum, The Citizen AQ4100-65W is accompanied by an official retail price of $4,300 USD, with production limited to 500 examples worldwide. Although Citizen also sells Eco-Drive watches for a fraction of this price, you can’t really compare The Citizen AQ4100-65W to the brand’s entry-level models, and The Citizen collection should really be seen as the Japanese manufacturer’s luxury-oriented range, in the same way that Grand Seiko used to be produced under the regular Seiko brand. Within that context, The Citizen AQ4100-65W should really be seen as Citizen’s equivalent of something like the Grand Seiko Snowflake; however, it takes things in a distinctly modern direction with a light-powered perpetual calendar movement that offers high-tech features and industry-leading levels of autonomy and accuracy. For more information on The Citizen AQ4100-65W Tosa washi paper dial watch, please visit the brand’s website.

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