Victorinox is most well known for their iconic Swiss Army Knives, which they’ve made for 130 years. However, they also make some great affordable watches. To celebrate their 25th year of watchmaking, they are introducing two new models, the Diver Master 500 and the INOX.
The Dive Master 500 is a chronograph diver that is limited to 500 pieces. The 43mm titanium case is sandblasted to a matte gray finish, as is the bracelet. It has a screw down crown and pushers, giving it a water resistant rating to 500 meters, with a helium release valve at 9 o’clock. It features an ETA caliber 2894-2 automatic movement with 12 hour chronograph.
The dial is the same monochrome gray, giving it a stealthy look, with brightly colored lume that is applied generously. The sub-dials have outer tracks that are lumed, as well as a swath from 0 to 20 minutes. The unidirectional divers bezel has lumed numbers from 0 to 20 as well. A cool feature is that all the lume looks green in daylight, but in the dark the bezel and minute hand lume glow blue, a very nice touch. Really a very unique looking and rugged chronograph diver.
The Victorinox INOX is a really cool new offering. The solid stainless steel case has a very “Gerald Genta” like design look to it, with big lugs and bold curves. The INOX was designed to be a link to Victorinox’s knife making history, and to be as rugged as a Swiss Army Knife. The one piece dial is stamped as opposed to having applied markers, and the hands are reinforced to be sure they stay on in any situation.
In addition to the regular testing, it has been subjected to 130 additional tests! They claim it can withstand a 10 meter drop onto concrete, 12G’s of acceleration an deceleration force, as well as being run over by a 64 ton tank. I for one am glad for that, as I I’m constantly losing watches to being run over by tanks.
All joking aside, it really is designed to withstand whatever might be thrown at it. One interesting accessory that comes with it is a large rubber ‘bumper’ that clips onto the front. This gives is a very “G-Shock” look. I’m not a huge fan of the look of the bumper, but it does afford additional protection. Powered by a Swiss Ronda caliber 715 quartz movement, it should be quite the rugged timepiece. I will be available in black, khaki green and navy blue dials, with matching rubber strap. $525
by Christoph McNeill a.k.a. @vintagediver