2020 is the 60th anniversary for Grand Seiko, a milestone that it hoped to celebrate this week with a global summit at its Tokyo headquarters where journalists and retailers would have been immersed in the Japanese culture, history and nature that shapes the brand’s philosophy, design and watchmaking.
With Coronavirus forcing all major watch shows to be cancelled this year, Grand Seiko is presenting its anniversary collection at a series of events around the world, and has given WatchPro and other media an advanced look at the watches that will be hitting retail this summer.
The headline announcement is the creation of an entirely new movement, Caliber 9SA5, which will be used in an entirely new generation of Grand Seiko mechanical watches.
In addition, Grand Seiko’s Spring Drive architecture has been built upon with a new Caliber 9RA5 for 2020 models.
Grand Seiko’s aim with the Celiber 9SA5 is to build on the success of the 9S architecture first unveiled in 1998, but to make it just as accurate despite being slimmer and more efficient.
The resulting 9SA5 is accurate to between +5 and –3 seconds a day and has a power reserve of 80 hours in a self-winding movement that is 15% slimmer at 5.18mm deep and 31mm across.
Attention to the movement’s aesthetic and finish has been just as thorough, with a gently curving bridge inspired by the shapes of Mount Iwate and a bend in the Shizukuishi River that runs near the Grand Seiko studio where the watch is made.
It will be used in a limited edition Grand Seiko 60th Anniversary watch that will go on sale this summer for around $43,000.
Only 100 will be made of the three-hander with date dress watch, which comes in a 40mm 18ct gold case and matching gold hands and dial markers.
It has a crystal caseback exposing the movement and is sold on a brown crocodile leather strap.