Introducing the Alpina Alpiner 4 “Business Timer” GMT and New Automatic Line

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The Alpiner 4 collection pays homage to the brand’s first sports watch from 1938, the Alpina 4. The “4” denotes Alpina founder Gottlieb Hauser’s four criteria for a sports watch: a stainless steel case with shock-resistance, water resistance, and anti-magnetism. Alpina’s initial revival of this concept in 2014 saw two watches: A GMT and a Sellita-based chronograph.  For 2016, the brand is expanding the collection with the introduction of a GMT “Business Timer” and a new Automatic line.

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Alpiner 4 Automatic

The new “Business Timer” GMT remains largely faithful to Alpina’s inaugural offering from 2014. It features the same 44mm case and bi-directional bezel with a 360-degree insert. Though the case falls a bit on the larger side, it’s beautifully sculpted with attractive bombé lugs that keep the case from looking like too much metal on the wrist.  The mixed finishing furthers this.

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The “Business Timer” GMT comes in two variants: silver dial and black dial.

The new “Business Timer” also comes equipped with Alpina’s AL-550 GMT movement, which boasts the brand’s in-house GMT/24H module. What makes this movement relatively special is that unlike most ETA-based GMT movements—which are getting more and more scarce, by the way—the “jumping hour” hand quick-sets in both directions at the first stop of the crown. In contrast, ETA’s 2893-2 features a quick-set GMT hand. A seemingly small difference, but Alpina’s approach, which has also historically been Rolex’s approach, is a far more intuitive way of implementing a GMT function, especially for those who frequently change time zones.

alpinaalpiner-businesstimer-2Where this new edition deviates from the 2014 model is that it adds a splash of color, bringing to the fold a red-blue “Pepsi” color scheme along the 24-hour chapter ring. Per Alpina’s marketing team, the red running from nine through five is meant to indicate the workday, hence the name “Business Timer.” To be perfectly blunt, this is a bit of a head scratcher. And paired with the 360-degree bezel insert—which should ideally track an additional time zone instead—the concept seems flawed. Thankfully, the watch is otherwise attractive and boasts a great movement, so the idea doesn’t drag the execution too far down.

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The new Automatic line is composed of three models: silver, “Glacier Blue,” and black.

Further expanding the Alpiner 4 line is the Automatic, a simple-three hander featuring many of the foundational cues found in the GMT. It too shares the same 44mm case, but this time opting for a more traditional steel diver’s bezel. The standout of this new series is undeniably the “Glacier Blue” dial variant, which has a dynamic, blue sunburst that contrasts beautifully against the red accents.

Both lines meet the ISO 764 standard—which specifies anti-magnetism up 4,800 A/m—and the ISO 1413 standard—which specifies the minimum requirements for shock resistance. Furthermore, both lines are water-resistant to 100 ATM (330 ft).

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Stunning “Glacier Blue” dial.

The Alpiner 4 “Business Timer” GMT retails for $1,995, and the Automatic for $1,395. To learn more, visit Alpina.

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Ilya is worn&wound's Managing Editor and Video Producer. He believes that when it comes to watches, quality, simplicity and functionality are king. This may very well explain his love for German and military-inspired watches. In addition to watches, Ilya brings an encyclopedic knowledge of leather, denim and all things related to menswear.
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  • Nick Shepherd

    Will Alpina ever cater for those of us with skinny wrists? I really like the brand, but I just cannot wear them.

  • Nelson

    The design is pretty nice but there are too many words on the dial.

  • johnwithanh

    What is the point of the 360 degree bezel? The utility is not obvious to me, but if there’s a use I’d love to know it.

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