Zenith has released yet another brilliant creation from their Christophe Colomb series in the form of a tribute to Felix Baumgartner. For those of you who have no idea who this is – relax, Baumgartner is only that guy in 2012 that broke the record for the highest free fall ever recorded. It is interesting that just last week Baumgartner’s record was shattered by a 47 year old man that eclipsed his 128,000 foot jump by more than 20,000 feet.
This turn of events does not in any way undermine the value of this watch. For all parties concerned, the breaking of Baumgartner’s record simply could not have been foreseen. With that said, I am curious to see how this watch will perform in the retail world. Of course, Zenith only needs 10 sales, as this was just how many of these watches were made. Then again, with a price tag of $275,000, it isn’t going to be everyday someone just walks in the boutique…
Beyond all of this, the Academy Christophe Colomb Tribute to Felix Baumgartner is a watch rich in detailing and innovation. The case is made from DLC coated platinum (not 100% sure, but I think this is the first time I’ve encountered such a case material). The case measures in at 45mm across, and it is 14.35mm thick and at its highest point is 21.4mm. The case is equipped with a black alligator leather strap.
Apart from the gyroscopic carriage, which we’ll get to in a minute, this model features an off-set subdial for the hours and minutes, and a counter at 9 for the small seconds. At 3 o’clock is a depiction of Felix Baumgartner just seconds before he embarked on his record breaking jump. This position s shared with a power reserve indicator in retrograde format, which counts down the watch’s remaining energy from 50 hours. The dial is a depiction of the earth in turquoise against a star-studded sky. The carriage houses the balance wheel and maintains this mechanism on a horizontal plane regardless of the position of the wrist.
Powering this timepiece is an EL Primero caliber 8804. The case back on this watch carries another depiction of Baumgartner, the earth, and the capsule. Inscribed here as well are all three records – the highest, the fastest, and the longest.
TAGS: Automatic Watches, Christophe Colomb, Exhibition Case Back, Felix Baumgartner, Haute Horlogerie, Leather, Limited Edition, Mechanical Watches, Men's Watches, Platinum, Power Reserve, Sapphire Crystal, Selfwinding Watches, Swiss Made, Zenith