Initial Impressions: Maratac Pilot Watch

Articles | 12.09.2011

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We’ve talked a lot about the Maratac Pilot watch on worn&wound. It features a Miyota 8245 21 jewel automatic movement, domed sapphire crystal, great looks and sells for just $200. Let me say that again, its sells for just $200. That’s an unreal price for a watch with this styling and components, so it wasn’t too hard to convince myself to pick one up.

*Check out our full review of the Maratac Pilot watch here.

The Maratac Pilot comes in a simple “watch taco” case with a black Maratac mil-series strap. The watch taco is actually quite nice, with a nylon shell, rigid construction and soft interior. This is a great bonus item to receive with the watch, and I have used it several times when traveling. The strap received is also very nice, which is consistent with my experience with other Maratac straps. It feels well constructed and features matte black hardware.

The Maratac itself meets and exceeds every expectation once you get it out of the packaging. While holding true to the traditional pilot aesthetic, everything about the Maratac’s styling is bold. On its expansive 46 mm case, the domed sapphire crystal allows the face of the Maratac to really pop. And with no logo or any other non-essential markings, the Maratac is easy to read. The oversized and offset onion crown is also a nice touch, breaking up the strict military styling and giving the Maratac some personality.

On the wrist, the Maratac wears rather well for its size. The case is curved in a way that the watch sits with a lower-than-expected profile, and the fact that the case is just 12.5 mm tall certainly helps. Most importantly, I just love the way the Maratac looks. As I hope you can see in the shots included, the Maratac is quite versatile, looking great on a variety of straps. This is the case with attire as well, fitting in with jeans and a t-shirt or work attire.

I am really excited to collect my thoughts on the Maratac and provide a more full review (with video) in a couple weeks. In the meantime, enjoy the pictures, and, what the hell, pick up a Maratac. They’re just $200!

  • Marc

    Wow, what a watch! What is the red strap featured in these images?

  • chill

    I got one of these watches a few weeks ago. It keeps spot on time and is very nice quality. for the price, you can’t go wrong! i put mine on a panatime strap and am digging it.

  • Simon Rex

    Blake, I have seen this watch on the CountyComm site but your images seem to bring out some of the finer design qualities of this watch. In fact, they, and your comments, may have convinvced me that I just need to buy it. The watch band on the Holbens site looks light brown compared to the one you have. Are they truly the same band without any modifications? The dark red on this band is ideal. Thanks, Simon

    • http://www.zachstarrweiss.com Zach

      Hey Simon,
      I’m glad to hear our pics are making the watch pop more. It is a great looking watch in person. Regarding the strap…it is not as red as it appears on the pictures on our site, but it is more red than it looks ont he holben’s site… Check the gallery on my review of the Seiko 5 SNZH53 for more pictures of that same strap. I hope this helps.

      -zach

      • Simon Rex

        Zach,
        Thanks very much for your reply and the additional images have helped.
        I would like to get your opinion on watch bands since you know them so well. I have see the bands by Vintager Watch Straps and Red12: both great makers. Here’s my question: Is it crazy to place a strap on a watch that costs as much as the watch itself or better to go with the Holben? All of those would be great on the Maratac.
        Happy Holidays,
        Simon

        • http://www.zachstarrweiss.com Zach

          Hi Simon,

          I don’t think it is crazy at all. First of all, you are adding to the overall value of the watch. Secondly, the right strap can make an inexpensive watch look like a more expensive watch (not that that is the only goal). Thirdly, you can use the strap on as many watches as you see fit, making the idea of buying a more expensive and better crafted strap more logical…and lastly, a great strap that you pick out can make the watch really unique to you and your sense of style.

          -Zach

  • Dennis

    46mm is a large watch. Does it wear ok? How does it look on the wrist? I see they make a mid size now that is 39mm, I’m having a hard time choosing between the two.

  • Blake

    Hey Dennis, thanks for reading and for the comment. The 46mm case is quite large, I won’t lie. But on my 7.5 inch wrist, the Maratac wears nicely. The case has a nice curvature to it, so that the watch rests on your wrist comfortably, and the 12.5mm height allows for a lower profile. One last thing to note is that the crown, being tucked away in the corner of the case, does not jab your wrist as is the case with a lot of larger watches. I will include wrist shots in my full review coming out on Wednesday. I also saw that the smaller Maratac was released recently, and I’ll talk about it more in my review of the 46mm model. I think its a great idea. For someone with a small wrist, the smaller Maratac is probably a much better choice. For my larger wrist though, I think I prefer the 46mm model.

  • Dennis

    I look forward to reading your full review.

  • http://URL dan

    Does anyone know where to get my Maratac Pilot Watch serviced? I broke the crown (it doesn’t screw in anymore) and I can’t find anyone to fix it… No web site or customer support either… Please help? Thank you!

  • http://URL Rich

    Where are they listed for $200? I see them for just under $300.