Concord C2 Chronograph

Without much fanfare, Concord introduced this new C2 Chronograph last week at Baselworld.  The C2 is an entirely new collection for Concord, and I am very excited and glad to see Concord moving more towards the mainstream watch consumer with this new series.  I’ve always found the Concord C1 watches to be a bit too brash and bulky, and so while the new C2 maintains some of the C1 DNA, it is sleeker and more appealing.  Price-wise, the new Concord C2 is also more accessible than its C1 brothers, but at $6,500 in black PVD (show below) and just under six-thousand in stainless steel, the price is a bit  way too  proud.  Overall, though, a nice new offering from Concord, and I look forward to seeing more watches in its new C2 Collection.

Concord C2 Chronograph

43mm black PVD-treated stainless steel, ETA 2894-2 automatic mechanical movement, red-accented black vulcanized rubber strap with folding clasp in black PVD-treated stainless steel

From a more nuanced perspective, really like the lug-free/pin-free design — by screwing the strap directly on to the case you have a much more secure system that with traditional watch pins.

Concord C1 EternalGravity

Another barely tolerable piece unique…

Wow.  Flamboyant?  Yes.  Over the top?  Yes.  Impressive? Maybe, but how to get past the flamboyance!  Would a man actually wear this 48.5mm chunk of gold and diamonds?  That’s all I can think of at the moment.  I need a return to simplicity!  Here’s the new Concord C1 EternalGravity:

48.5mm white gold case, mechanical hand-wound movement, flyback chronograph, tourbillon, power-reserve, 18.5mm thick

403 gems totalling 25.31 carats — black diamonds, white diamonds, carnelians


Baselworld 2010: Concord C1 Code Chronograph

After reinventing itself over the past few years under former President Vincent Perriard (now running TechnoMarine) and others, the distinct look of Concord’s C1 collection is what I identify the brand with.  While I’ve never been a fan of the case shape/design (purely a matter of personal preference), I did admire Concord’s pushing of the proverbial envelope with its concept watches such as the C1 QuantumGravity.  So what will Concord deliver in 2010 under the new leadership of Alexander Grinberg?  To be seen!  But for now here is one new watch that the brand will be showing at Baselworld 2010, the C1 Code Chronograph.  My comments/thoughts below the pics.

Key specs: Case Black PVD steel, 44 mm diameter, 3.3 mm sapphire crystal, anti-reflective on both sides, mathematical formulae engraved in the crystal, PVD steel and black rubber crown, Water-resistant to 200 m, Black carbon fibre dial

Maybe it is because I am not a mathematician, but I don’t get the appeal of this “code”.  While the engraving of an algebraic formula/cryptic mathematical equation directly into the crystal of the watch is novel, it seems to make the (already busy) dial hard to read and I wonder what is the real allure of this for a potential buyer?  I see none.  Sure it might look cool up close and in person, but I can see this novelty wearing off rather quickly.  It seems to be a bit gimmicky without any real meaning.  What say you?

The First Concord C1 QuantumGravity Is Delivered

Do you remember the Concord C1 QuantumGravity?  Of course you do!  With a watch as bold and daring as this one, it is kinda hard to forget.  Well, looks like the watch is finally making its way into the hands of customers.  Concord recently produced this short video of the C1 QuantumGravity watch being assembled for final delivery to the customer. This particular watch happens to be the first watch that was delivered to the customer, and only 10 pieces of this watch will ever be produced.  All 10 should be complete and delivered by the first half of 2010, Concord says, which is impressive and reflects highly on the brand, in my view, because this is such a complex watch and sometimes watches such as these can get delayed for years.  Some more discussion on the intense reaction caused by the introduction of this watch, after the jump:

You may recall that the initial introduction of the C1 QuantumGravity was met with some very mixed reactions from the watch community.  Not only is it a very complex and technically sophisticated watch, its design is very bold, and let’s face it – this watch is a beast on the wrist – absolutely huge!  With such a watch, you know that some will love it, some will hate it, and the C1 QuantumGravity was no exception.  Feelings towards this watch were intense across the spectrum!

As I discussed in a couple articles over at Fratello Watches blog, I was skeptical of this watch at first because “pre-launch” Concord really hyped the watch in its press materials – using a lot of marketing-speak mumbo jumbo, etc.  But then I saw some live pics of the watch and some video, and I warmed up to it a bit.  Still, there are some really strong opinions about this watch and most comments and discussions I had online were at the extremes of either loving or hating the watch. You can see lots of pics and several videos (including some from those who filmed the watch in person) of the watch on the Baselworld 2009 thread for Concord, here.

The good thing is that this watch was very bold, it did inspire a lot of passion on both sides of the aisle, and it did generate a lot of publicity for Concord.  Sure, sure it is a bit of a “concept watch” that is more of a conversation piece than anything, but as a brand it comes down to getting watch enthusiasts talking about your brand and your watches, and in this respect Concord succeeded in a big way.

So I guess that “love it” or “hate it”, the C1 QuantumGravity is officially here and will soon be “gracing” the wrists of a few lucky and deep-pocketed collectors around the world.  Will be interesting to see if any of these watches get spotted “in the wild” in 2010, but most likely they will not go too far from the home of their respective owners.

Looking ahead for Concord, with Alex Grinberg now at the helm (after Vincent Perriard’s departure), I am quite interested to see what direction Concord goes in 2010 with its new watches.