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Alpina has updated its aviation-themed Startimer collection with a new design featuring a new case, new bezel and new 41mm diameter size. 

One of the first new mechanical models displaying the updated design, the Startimer Pilot Automatic, sports a blue, black or green dial, a steel or black PVD-coated case and a steel bracelet or a top-stitched calfskin leather strap. 

Alpina notes that the new collection more closely echoes its own early pilot watch designs, with the newest size offering a compromise between the existing 44mm and 40mm versions, both of which will remain in the collection. 

The new fluted bezel is especially notable for its retro appeal and was initially designed in the early part of the last century to give pilots wearing gloves a surer grip. Likewise, the watch’s crown is fluted (an “onion” profile) to enhance a gloved grip, and is screwed down to ensure water resistance to 100 meters. 

In addition, Alpina has revised the Startimer’s hands, changing the earlier leaf shape to the newer cathedral design, filled with luminous material. A new fine tip enables the index markers to be read more precisely. The seconds hand has also been updated with the Alpina triangular counterweight. 

Both the new hands point to smaller Arabic numerals and a railway style minutes track. The five-minute intervals are marked by a luminous marker next to the numeral on the track. 

Finally, Alpina has moved the date window from its previous location at 3 o’clock to a more traditional pilot watch location at 6 o’clock. 

Inside Alpina fits its Sellita-based FC-525 automatic movement. 

Look for the new Alpina Startimer Automatic in three variations: with a black dial on a steel bracelet, a black dial on a black strap or a blue dial set with a brown calfskin strap.

(Note that Alpina also offers a quartz-powered Startimer Quartz Chronograph Big Date with the same design updates described above.)

Prices: $1,295 (SS bracelet), $1195 (leather strap).

Seiko Presage Style 60s Series takes its inspiration from the Seiko original “Crown Chronograph” introduced in 1964. While these modern versions combine the vintage feel of the 1964 version with modern updates, the new watches are not in-fact chronographs but create a timeless look that will be always be comfortably in-style. Outside components show the vintage Crown Chronograph’s boxed crystal, faceted indexes, and dauphine hands, while inside the case is the Seiko 4R35 automatic winding mechanical movement ticking away at 21,600 vph with a 41-hour power reserve. A total of seven variations exists, and all are crafted in stainless steel and 40.8mm in diameter. One version has the “heartbeat” cut-out dial highlighting the balance wheel and escapement ($525), the other has a full coverage dial ($575). Lumibrite is applied in all variations. 

Maen’s Manhattan 37 will no-doubt have certain watch snobs crying foul, while others will appreciate the accessibility of a watch of this character for only $600. This watch hits the design nail on the head with attention to detail on the case, dial, and bracelet. Inside the brushed and polished 37mm stainless steel case beats the automatic winding Ronda caliber R150 visible through the sapphire case-back, while a fully integrated metal bracelet gently tapers from its full width at the case to its thinnest at the butterfly clasp. Four dial versions are available and each looks more stunning than the previous. 

Frederique Constant returns to its roots and adds two watches sporting guilloché dials to its long-running Classics Heart Beat Automatic collection. 

While the pair may be new to the Geneva watchmaker’s Classics Automatic collection, their ‘Heart Beat’ design, which exposes a portion of the automatic movement, is a characteristic Frederique Constant pioneered. In fact, when Frederique Constant first debuted the open balance wheel design in 1994, the young brand neglected to protect what was at the time a novel design. As it was never patented, the concept continues to be copied by numerous watch brands. 

These latest additions to the collection each measure 40mm diameter steel case and so-called ‘apple’ hands and choice of a silver dial and a dark khaki dial. The highlighted guilloche dial center is framed by a nice satin-finished hour circle with twelve very classic Roman numerals. 

Frederique Constant fits its Sellita-based automatic FC-310 caliber inside these two newest Classics Heart Beat Automatic watches, with just a bit exposed on the front of the dial, offering a power reserve of 38 hours. 

Price: $1,495. 

The new Shinola Monster GMT, this Detroit-based watchmaker’s first automatic GMT model, makes tracking time in multiple time zones simple and pleasing thanks to a particularly handsome blue-dial and blue bezel.

Starting with its ‘diver down’ flag at 12 o’clock, and over to the large calendar aperture at 3 o’clock, this nicely proportioned navy blue dial is a pleasure to eye.  Shinola then enhances that visual pleasure by offering the option to swap the steel quick-release bracelet with a patterned blue strap made from recycled ocean bound plastic.

The watch is especially attractive to those with smaller wrists or collectors who prefer sporty watches with moderate case diameters. This new model at 40mm is smaller than other models in Shinola’s impressive Monster series, which measure 43mm and 45mm.   

You’ll find the requisite 24-hour markers needed to track time in another timezone plainly positioned along a navy-blue ceramic bezel insert. The independently set blue and orange-tipped GMT hand, which rotates once a day, allows you to check that second timezone quickly.

Inside Shinola fits a Sellita automatic movement with a solid 56-hour power reserve. The movement, protected with 100 meters of water resistance, is visible through the watch’s fully open caseback. 

Price: $1,995. 

Over the past few years Accutron has stepped out from under the Bulova umbrella and is reviving past classics. The Accutron Legacy collection represents watches originally created in the 1960s and reflects the design-centric and free-thinking fashion of that era. The brands Legacy “565” and “203” watches (also known as the “Football Watches”) were both originally launched in 1966. 

In the original it was the distinctive asymmetrical cases that brought about the “football” nickname with two versions in either a crosshatch pattern or gold relief version, both now re-created. These modern versions reimagine the classic with an updated, Swiss-made 26-jewel movement. The new Legacy “565” features the cross-hatching pattern on the bezel of the silver-tone stainless steel 34mm case. ($1,390). The “203” design features a 34mm gold- and silver-tone stainless steel case with a three-hand champagne dial, Arabic numerals, and fine-line stick markers on the outer ring ($1,450). Both pieces are water resistant to 30M and are individually numbered and limited to 600 pieces.  In an unending sea of round watches, these Accutron Legacy watches offer a few new curves that will stand out from the crowd. 

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