Founded in 2013, the designer driven Detroit watch brand (no relation to that “other” Detroit based brand) is celebrating their 6th anniversary this year with their own take on the diver’s type.
From the first glance you can tell that the Detroit Diver is not your typical tool watch - concerned only with the ostensible purpose the original designs. This one is a bit more of a “gentleman’s diver” if you will. Yes, it has a 30atm rating for its 43 mm stainless steel housing, and yes it even integrates a helium release valve into the case, but while this inspired design may occasionally take a dip in the pool, I’m not certain that I’d bring this handsome accoutrement into harm’s way on an actual dive. And that’s OK. There are fewer people to show it off to underwater anyway!
Owner/designer Patrick Ayoub points out that his modest production of only 500 watches per year means that exclusivity is a guarantee and on top of that, each of the 150 Detroit Divers will be individually numbered as part of that limited production.
Taking a closer look at the design, the deft touch of an actual designer starts to make itself known. Not by a radical slap in the face design mind you, but rather in the subtle cues that come together to create the whole. Yes, this is technically a diver type by build and by ISO 6425 standards, but the appeal of this watch is in the refinement and attentions to detail. A touch of color here, elegantly beveled bezels there, and an overarching allusion to the history of the Detroit region come together in what might be called a “dress diver” since the watch will not look out of place under the sleeve of a sport coat.
Inside beat a Swiss Made ETA 2892A2 (2893-2 for the GMT) with an anti-reflective coated sapphire glass on top. The flat blue grey or black bezels are in ceramic and of course uni-directional. They nicely match the dials which are enhanced with markers and hands coated with a generous application of Superluminova. Learn more or pre-order your own “Detroit 1701 Pontchartrain Great Lakes Edition Diver” (that’s a mouth full) at www.detroitwatchco.com . Prices range from $1,400-$1,600 for these bathing beauties and you can replace the extendable stainless steel bracelet with a sailcloth strap for a more casual option.