Editor’s note: This is a Mind (stats), Body (design features) & Soul (what’s special) review of the new Zenith Chronomaster Revival Lupin The Third 2nd Edition watch. For our other detailed reviews, please head to our dedicated review section here.
What is it: The new Zenith Chronomaster Revival Lupin The Third 2nd Edition
Why: Because the popularity of the 2019’s 1st edition Chronomaster A384 “Lupin The Third” — that not only was the first watch ever made to be inspired by a Japanese anime series but also in very limited quantities of 50-pieces only — left a few hearts broken; because a second Zenith watch appears in the Japanese Manga; and because it also marks the opening of the new Zenith Ginza Boutique. Plus hey, which true watch connoisseur in their proper state of mind would say no to a Zenith Limited Edition Revival?!
When released: October 14, 2020
Where: Zenith Ginza Boutique, Limited edition of 200 pieces only. It should also be available soon at other Zenith boutiques and e-shop though if I am not wrong, all pieces have already been allocated.
Who is it for: For both Zenith and manga lovers. It’s also a fantastic timepiece for anyone who may not be too familiar with either but wish to immerse themselves into these respective worlds
How does it do: It should write its own pay check with ease; 9’400 CHF for a LE watch based on a popular Manga series and the iconic calibre 3019PHC — more on that in a bit — with a vintage-inspired panda dial is simply a great deal.
Missing: The low 50m water-resistance is definitely a bummer. And even though I love the panda execution here and it is bound by the design of the watch that appears in the manga, it’s a bit disappointing that it is a bit similar than the original Zenith El Primero A384 Revival from earlier this year.
But the beige Super-LumiNova®SLN coating of the hour-markers and hands is what really sets it apart though. Also, this may be nitpicking or a by-product of my architectural studies, but I would have loved if the numbering on the azurage sub-dials and the the date wheel were also beige instead of white.
The new Zenith Chronomaster Revival Lupin The Third 2nd Edition features the calibre El Primero 400 which is a self-winding automatic movement with column-wheel chronograph comprising of 278 parts, beating at the frequency of 5Hz (36’000 A/h), and boasting of a decent (min.) 50 hour power reserve.
The calibre El Primero 400 has been in production since 1986 is based on the 1985 re-issue Cal. 40.0 which in turn was based on the 1969 original automatic chronograph movement the calibre 3019PHC. So when you get the new Zenith Chronomaster Revival Lupin The Third 2nd Edition, you are getting a piece of history.
The movement helps with depicting the following functions: hours and minutes in the centre, small seconds at 9’o clock, a central chronograph hand, a 12-hour counter at 6’o clock, a 30-minute counter at 3’o clock, a tachymetric scale and a date indication at 4:30.
Continuing the 50th anniversary celebrations of their famed El Primero movement into 2020, Zenith is has managed to come up with an impressive line-up this year: the non-limited version of the El primero A384 (a watch series that ran from 1969 to 1971 only), the El Primero A3818 Revival ‘Cover Girl’, the Chronomaster Revival “Shadow”, and the Chronomaster Revival Manufacture Edition are some of the timepieces that have assisted in ‘reviving’ the Swiss watch industry during the pandemic.
The Zenith Chronomaster Revival Lupin The Third 2nd Edition continues that trend.
Compared to the regular production El Primero A384 Revival reference 03.A384.400/21.M384 that retails for 8’400 CHF, the new Zenith Chronomaster Revival Lupin The Third 2nd Edition ref. 03.L384-2.400/07.M384 comes at a bit of a premium at 9’400 CHF but the limited quantities and the manga connection make it a steal.
Its 30mm diameter movement is encased inside the original 37mm diameter 1969 case with a water-resistance of 50m (5 ATM).
This angular brushed & polished stainless steel case nicely frames the panda dial that really comes alive with the use of the rhodium-plated, faceted and coated with beige Super-LumiNova®SLN hour-markers and hands.
The watch package that looks like a beautiful 70s vintage watch but retro-fitted for the present day is completed by the use of the Gay Frères stainless steel “ladder” bracelet.
In addition to the whole manga connection, I think the panda dial is the star here. The white dial with contrasting black chronograph counters is effortlessly charming and the steel ladder bracelet reminiscent of the original A384 hails back strongly to the one depicted in Lupin The Third as worn on the wrist of a character named Daisuke Jigen, who is the partner of the title character Lupin III. I like how as a tribute to this the display case-back features an engraved drawing of Daisuke Jigen.
Just like the Japanese Manga series have seen various sequels and spawned numerous manga comics, Zenith is writing the next chapter with the new Lupin The Third 2nd Edition watch. The manga follows the escapades of its protagonist, a master thief.
In an interview, Kazuhiko Kato, better known as Monkey Punch, the original creator of Lupin III, once said about the lead character in his manga – “In a word, he’s all about ‘freedom’, isn’t he. I think this makes him a reflection of what we’d like to be ourselves”.
The new Zenith Chronomaster Revival Lupin The Third 2nd Edition is a stunning timepiece that allows its wearer to take the road less travelled and to have the freedom to have their own identity. Part vintage, part quirky, and full of charm, the new timepiece is definitely one of the better looking chronographs from 2020.
“Don’t be a friggin’ idiot!” says Daisuke Jigen to Arsene Lupin III in the dubbed version of Lupin the 3rd: The Mystery of Mamo. Well, if you can afford it and get the chance, don’t be a friggin’ idiot and not add to this to your collection.
For more information on the new Zenith Chronomaster Revival Lupin The Third 2nd Edition and other watches for the brand, please head to their website here. All images unless stated otherwise ©Zenith. All rights reserved.