Underwater diving and the horological inventions associated with it take pride of place in the world of watches. Especially in the1950s and 1960s, timepiece makers created watches that could plumb the ocean depths with elan. Nivada Grenchen’s diver’s watches were among the creations of this era. The brand has now introduced (read reintroduced) its Nivada Grenchen Antarctic-Diver watch, paying homage to the earliest model from the 50s and sporting wristband variations.
Along with the watch, a book, titled Nivada Grenchen Antarctic – The History of a Legend, has also been released. It is authored by Aashdin K. Billimoria, a well-known watch collector (apparently, his personal collection comprises 450 timepieces, including vintage ones) and historian. The 100-page book offers a detailed analysis of the Nivada Grenchen Antarctic collection. Documenting the history of the Antarctic range and the brand, the book also explores how the model has adapted to the times over the years. It ends with an interview with the brand’s presiding CEO Guillaume Laidet.
Now coming back to the watch, the 38 mm stainless steel Nivada Grenchen Antarctic-Diver timepiece does resemble the variant from the 50s. The watch comes with a unidirectional bezel with black ceramic inserts and white numerals. The signature black dial comes with patinaed “cream latte” hour, minute hands and hour markers while the central second hand gets a red tip.
The date window is located at 3 o’clock with a Rolex-style Cyclops lens. There is a large screw-down crown. Honouring the original model are the Nivada Automatic logo at 12 o’clock and ‘Antarctic-Diver’ in unmistakable vintage script at 6 o’clock. The watch is run by Calibre SOPROD P024, a self-winding, automatic movement with 38 hours of power reserve. This movement is based on ETA 2824-2. Turning the watch showcases the solid screw-down stainless steel caseback with the engraving of a penguin, which is the symbol used for Nivada Grenchen’s Antarctic collection.
The Nivada Grenchen Antarctic-Diver is available with 10 bracelet and strap options, including leather and rubber straps and steel bracelets in multiple styles. The watch comes with a 200-metre water resistance and is ideal for recreational diving. For water sport activities, use the steel bracelet or the rubber strap version. The leather strap, on the other hand, lends the watch a sporty-cum-vintage appeal; the stainless steel bracelet ensures a monochromatic look.