It’s time to swim with the new Christopher Ward C60 BLUE Marine Foundation LE
Editor’s note: This is a Mind (stats), Body (design features) & Soul (what’s special) review of the new Christopher Ward C60 BLUE Marine Foundation watch. Watch this space for a detailed hands-on review coming soon. You can read our existing detailed reviews here.
What is it: The new Christopher Ward C60 BLUE
Why: Because Christopher Ward wears the crown when it comes to best value entry-level Swiss timepieces and can decidedly so give the watch community stunning divers after divers as is evident from their 2020 lineup that includes the likes of C60 Elite GMT 1000, C60 Sapphire and the C65 Super Compressor. The new Christopher Ward C60 BLUE is more special though, as it is designed in collaboration with Blue Marine Foundation – in celebration of the charity’s 10th anniversary and all profits from this limited-edition of 500-pieces only watch go to that charity.
When released: 12 November 2020
Where: Available online, limited edition of 500-pieces only
Who is it for: For someone who wants to have it all with one timepiece – beautiful aesthetics, transparent dial, diving capabilities, workhorse movement, limited edition appeal, low retail cost of $1’380 AUD, association with a charity, and a subtle nod to care for the environment
How does it do: Most strikingly the watch has as a translucent sapphire dial that carries the Blue Marine Foundation’s wave symbol and a watch strap made from reclaimed and recycled ocean plastic sourced by TIDE. The packaging itself the brand claims is made from 95 per cent bio-degradable materials and is a first in the luxury watch market. And in the words of the brand, it is a “dive watch that pays tribute to the ocean and the people protecting it for future generations”.
They also make use of a blue unidirectional zirconia (ZrO²) ceramic bezel at this price point, and just to put this into context, even the $4’500 AUD Tudor BB 58 ‘Navy Blue’ that I personally own and love only features a less scratch-resistant aluminium bezel. Throw in CW’s 60/60 policy and the fact that customers can also ‘buy now and pay later’ (on all orders over £500) with just one click with a six or 12-month repayment plan with 0% interest using PayPal Credit, when it comes to the new Christopher Ward C60 BLUE LE, can’t go wrong with it, mate.
Missing: Pretty much every time I end up reviewing a Christopher Ward release, the only disappointing feature that repeats itself is the low 38-hour power reserve. I have also spoken about this previously and realise that in order for them to keep their watches so exceptionally priced, an entry-level Sellita SW200 is probably their best bet, but still, in this day and age, anything less than at least 2-days power reserve is a bit poor. Also, compared to the similar C60 Sapphire, I personally miss having a display case-back.
The movement is the same as their C60 Sapphire released earlier this year. The new Christopher Ward C60 BLUE uses the outsourced calibre Sellita SW200 that is a self-winding movement beating at the frequency of 4Hz (28’800 A/h) offering a timing tolerance of -20/+20 seconds per day. It comprises of 26 jewels, Christopher Ward’s twin-flag engraving over ‘Colimaçoné’ finish on the rotor, features a low 38-hour power reserve and central hacking seconds mechanism along with an anti-shock system.
Even though the movement can not be admired through the screw-down exhibition caseback, one can still appreciate the inclusion of the screw-down deep-stamped 3D backplate with a unique engraved serial number. The watch also features a screw-down crown stamped with the twin-flag motif. The entire package is dive ready boasting of an impressive 600m (60 ATM) water-resistance. Hmm, good looks and practical, now there’s a rare one.
The movement is encased inside a 40mm diameter and 12.95mm thick brushed and polished marine-grade 316L stainless steel case that measures 47.46mm lug to lug and weighs only 83g.
This ‘light-catcher’ case encompasses the beautiful blue sapphire dial that carries a wave pattern inspired by BLUE Marine Foundation’s logo, with a contrasting dark and light blue aesthetic symbolising the clean water the charity is working to preserve.
I remember reviewing the CW C60 Sapphire back in April and calling it the antidote to your (Covid-19) blues. At the price of £795 or $1’230 AUD, I also remember calling it the ‘Master of its Domain’ (as a reference to Seinfeld). The new Christopher Ward C60 Blue Marine Foundation LE essentially takes that watch, adds a few cool subtle features to make it distinctive enough, and believe it or not but ends up improving upon the C60 Sapphire in a way I didn’t think possible.
It all ends up being very slightly more expensive, coming in at £895 or $1’380 AUD, yet punches well above its price point and frankly is still without any competition. In the price range of 1200 to 1500 AUD, you would be hard-pressed to find Swiss luxury watches that feature a transparent dial and the only one I think competes with this is the Mido Commander Gradient that retails for $1’325 AUD and features a low 50m water-resistance but an impressive 80-hour power reserve.
The new Christopher Ward C60 BLUE, however, gains a clear edge owing to the use of a sapphire crystal rather than acrylic that is stronger and more durable, use of a ceramic and not aluminium bezel, high water-resistance and cool design features that we will be detailing in our hands-on review coming soon.
In the meanwhile, if you like this and wish to purchase it, head over to CW’s official website here. All images unless otherwise stated are © 2016 Christopher Ward (London) Ltd.