October 9, 2020
While many watch brands can take decades to establish a recognizable signature style, relative newcomer NORQAIN has established a dedicated following in only a few short years. One of the cornerstones of this rapid success has been the Freedom 60 series, the brand’s retro sports watch series that blends decidedly vintage cues together without ever directly emulating any real vintage reference. For its latest set of releases, NORQAIN has expanded the Freedom 60 line with not one but two new series, both equipped with manufacture calibers. Both the NORQAIN Freedom 60 GMT (including the bronze NORQAIN Freedom 60 GMT Limited Edition) and the NORQAIN Freedom 60 39mm take the brand’s retro-modern design in a more compact, vintage direction, with suitably warm color palettes to match.
Both the NORQAIN Freedom 60 GMT and the Freedom 60 39mm start with similar case architecture in either 316L stainless steel or bronze. It’s a clean, classic design, with narrow set tapering sports lugs and a narrow smooth bezel, but the shape is given a touch of distinction thanks to the signature engraved NORQAIN plaque at 9 o’clock. As the name might suggest, the case for the three hand Freedom 60 39mm measures in at a compact 39mm diameter, while the Freedom 60 GMT is a touch larger at 40.5mm. Both models feature a decent 100 meter water resistance rating along with a sapphire display caseback.
The existing hallmarks of the Freedom 60 line form the basis for the dial designs of both the NORQAIN Freedom 60 GMT and the Freedom 60 39mm, but each series evolves the look in a somewhat different direction. For the Freedom 60 39mm series, the designs are dressier and more elemental, with brightly polished syringe hands accentuated by applied baton indices with a splash of khaki as a warm accent. The stainless steel model adds a graphite gray sunburst dial to the mix, while the bronze cased version takes a more delicate vintage approach with black hardware and a creamy white dial surface.
For the Freedom 60 GMT series, this formula is made bolder and more complex, with a 3 o’clock date window, two tone central 24 hour ring, and a red arrow tipped GMT hand. The deep black dial of the stainless steel version is accentuated by a white and gray two tone GMT ring, while the bronze cased model takes the classic “root beer” colorway with bronze hardware and a rich brown sunburst dial. This is then finished off by a black and white GMT ring.
NORQAIN powers the Freedom 60 GMT with its new manufacture NN20/2 automatic GMT movement, designed in partnership with movement manufacturer Kenissi. This movement features a jumping hour GMT hand for easy second time zone setting, and is COSC chronometer certified for accuracy with a hefty 70 hour power reserve at a 28,800 bph beat rate. In terms of decoration, the bridge is engraved with the brand’s core tenets of “Adventure – Freedom – Independence,” along with a signed rotor. For the Freedom 60 39mm, NORQAIN uses its sister movement, the manufacture NN20/1. Mechanically similar to its GMT stablemate, this three hand movement boasts the same decorations along with an identical COSC chronometer accuracy rating, 70 hour power reserve, and 28,800 bph beat rate.
For both the Freedom 60 GMT and the Freedom 60 39mm, NORQAIN offers straps in its proprietary Norlando leather. Both GMT variants and the bronze cased Freedom 60 39mm render this leather strap in a classic tobacco brown, while the stainless steel Freedom 60 39mm receives a more striking white leather treatment. In both cases, stitching is cleanly minimal, with only a signature twin arrow stitch near the lugs.
With the Freedom 60 GMT and Freedom 60 39mm series, NORQAIN has refined the vintage sporting spirit of the brand in cleaner, more compact iterations. All models in the NORQAIN Freedom 60 GMT and NORQAIN Freedom 60 39mm lines are available now through authorized dealers, including the bronze cased Freedom 60 GMT Limited Edition which is limited to 300 pieces. MSRP for the NORQAIN Freedom 60 GMT begins at $3,590, while pricing for the NORQAIN Freedom 60 39mm starts at $2,720. For more information, please visit the brand’s website.