A classic is back…
As we brought to your attention this past March, Seiko is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year. To mark the occasion, Seiko has released the new and limited edition Grand Seiko 44GS watch, available in four metals (pictured above is the white gold model, limited to 70 pieces). The 44 GS sets the standard for the GS brand; it was the first in the collection’s history to embody the iconic characteristics of the Grand Seiko design and went on to become the brand’s icon for precision luxury time pieces. The very first Grand Seiko was created in 1960 and produced in Nagano, Japan, and this new piece pays nice tribute to one a GS design which was introduced a few years later. Restrained and serene, mechanically pure and precise — the Seiko way — this watch was by far the highlight of what I saw from the brand during my meeting with them at Baselworld last month.
Seiko 44GS in Steel
Limited Edition 700 pieces
The 44GS is tribute to one of Grand Seiko’s most historical references, the 44GS which was first produced in 1967, seven years after the introduction of the original Grand Seiko. The various angles and edges of the case are emblematic of series.
The razor-sharp edges to the hands and hour markers are also signature characteristics of Grand Seiko.
This new limited edition version of the 44 GS is a faithful recreation of the original — right down to the modest 37.9 mm case, among other details.
The only major departure between the tribute and the original come from the company’s decision to use precious metals in the GS variants and the movement chosen to power the watch. Whereas the original 44GS was powered by the hand wound calibre 4420B beating at 18,000 vph, the modern version features the new 9S64 movement. The 9S64 (also hand wound) was first introduced by Seiko in 2011 and beats at 28,000 vph with a respectable 72 hour power reserve.
The case back carries the Grand Seiko emblem, just like the original:
There will be four models in the collection, three of which will be available in gold (white, yellow and rose) and a fourth version which will be produced in stainless steel like the original Grand Seiko 44 GS and will be limited to 700 pieces world wide. The gold models are highly exclusive, with only 70 pieces of each being made.
Limited Edition 70 pieces
Limited Edition 70 pieces
On sale now — and oh, yes — Grand Seiko now has quite a few points of sale here in the USA!
Did You Know?
Seiko was founded in 1881 by Kintarō Hattori who opened a jewelry shop in Tokyo, Japan. 11 years later Hattori started producing clocks under the pseudonym of Seikosha which roughly translates as House of Exquisite Workmanship. The first Seiko watches appeared in 1924. The first GS went on sale in 1960 and was produced in Nagano, Japan.
This article was edited by Kyle Stults, with contribution by guest author Stephanie Potter, Marketing Copywriter at The Watch Hut, the UK’s largest watch website.