Zodiac chose a rather showy and provocative way to debut its new in-house caliber STP 6-15 skeletonized automatic movement. Rather than the typically boring way many new skeletonized watches are rendered, Zodiac decided to get very playful with colors and art, while continuing to assert the sport watch nature of the Super Sea Wolf collection that this new Zodiac reference ZO9298 exists within. Let’s start with the showy, gradient-style rainbow bezel, as well as the playful dial that includes a new set of hour markers for the SSW collection. The hands are also more rounded, a feature that I helped Zodiac to debut with my Super Sea Wolf Aquamarine Dream watch where I wanted to soften the otherwise sharper-looking rectangular hands.
Some people are going to love this design, while others are not going to be as into it, but the important thing is that Zodiac now has a very interesting new skeletonized movement to play with. The STP 6-15 movement has the same 4Hz operational frequency as well as two days of power reserve as the standard movements but with skeletonized bridges and an emphasis on visibility. Zodiac opts for mostly dark-colored bridges that contrast well with the lighter elements on the movement as well as offer improvements for dial legibility. Zodiac was smart enough to ensure that the hands and hour markers (which are connected to the flange ring) are easy to see and highly visible, as well as painted with Super-LumiNova for night viewing. Yellow is chosen as the accent color for the minute hand, which is matched by the triangle on the bezel at the 60-minute mark. Other dial colors include white and deep blue (which works well with the yellow). Overall, Zodiac did a great job emphasizing the skeletonized nature of the movement (also visible through the caseback, which is not the case on most Super Sea Wolf watches), as well as maintaining a focus on good dial legibility. So, for me, that is a job well done.
Zodiac calls the rainbow bezel its “Super Chroma” bezel, and this is the first time it has done anything like that (note the matching rainbow ring around the movement window on the rear of the case). The bezel insert is topped with a K1 mineral insert, and over the dial is an AR-coated sapphire crystal. The watch case is water resistant to 200 meters and is 40mm-wide in steel, as is the case with most other Super Sea Wolf timepieces. Zodiac opted to pair the ZO9298 with its five-link “jubilee-style” bracelet, which I think was a good idea given the overall theme of this watch. Don’t forget that the bracelet has small spring-loaded sections next to the butterfly-style clasp, which operates to increase wearing comfort.
Whether or not Zodiac intended for the Super Sea Wolf ZO9298 to be a “unisex” watch, the overall composition and size of this timepiece do lend itself well to both male and female fashion sensibility. I, for one, just like to see the blazing Super Chroma colors on the bezel and to admire the clockwork visible thanks to skeletonized movement. There is no particular greater theme here aside from Zodiac being playful, while also experimenting with new parts and features for the Super Sea Wolf family.
Expect more use of the STP 6-15 skeletonized automatic movement in other Zodiac watches soon. Zodiac has further designated the ZO9298 as a limited-edition model but without a specific number of units to be produced. My instinct tells me that this is the type of watch to perform a bit tepidly at launch but later gain cult appreciation some years in the future as people tend to appreciate the playfulness and also seriousness of a watch like this. Price for the Zodiac ZO9298 Super Sea Wolf Skeleton watch is $1,895. Learn more at the Zodiac watches website.