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Zenith gives a carbon fiber makeover to the Defy Classic

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November 2020


Zenith gives a carbon fiber makeover to the Defy Classic

Carbon fiber is prized for its rare combination of lightness and durability as well as its unique and futuristic appearance. Yet its use in watchmaking has been fairly limited. One part in particular had eluded watchmakers: the bracelet. The Defy Classic Carbon explores uncharted territory of innovation, with a full carbon fiber construction – including the integrated bracelet.

Z

enith has repeatedly demonstrated its mastery of innovative materials in the Defy line. The Defy Classic Carbon explores uncharted territory of innovation, with a full carbon fiber construction – including the integrated bracelet.

Carbon fiber is prized for its rare combination of lightness and durability as well as its unique and futuristic appearance. Yet its use in watchmaking has been fairly limited.

One part in particular has eluded watchmakers: the bracelet. Up until now, so-called carbon fiber watch bracelets have either been superficial plaques of the composite material fixed to a metal base or reserved for a handful of highly complicated watches produced in very small numbers.

With the Defy Classic Carbon, Zenith brings forth an ergonomic and eye-catching solid carbon bracelet to an automatic watch, an unprecedented technical feat and edgy design statement.

Producing a full carbon fiber bracelet required the Manufacture to take on an entirely new set of technical challenges. Weighing a mere 65 grams in total with its carbon bracelet and titanium clasp, the Defy Classic Carbon sets a new benchmark of precision for Zenith that extends beyond the movement.

In relative terms, it weighs almost half as much as an equivalent Defy Classic model in titanium with a bracelet in the same metal, which is already significantly lighter than traditional metals like stainless steel and gold. Its intriguingly nuanced appearance gives way to a sensation that’s unexpectedly silky and smooth to the touch.

Following the angular lines of the Defy Classic case that’s made in the same material, each link in the bracelet is a piece of solid carbon fiber, molded and milled with precision in such a way that it highlights the layers or “strata” of the carbon fiber, while providing superior ergonomics on the wrist. Its lightness, comfort and visual impact are bound to intrigue.

Because the patterns are layering of carbon fiber can differ from one component to the next, no two watches will be exactly alike. And for those who prefer the contrast of the carbon fiber case against strap, the Defy Classic Carbon is also available with a black rubber cordura-effect strap, with a carbon and titanium folding buckle.

The Defy Classic Carbon’s aesthetic is homogenous with the dark allure of the carbon fiber case and bracelet, emphasizing the unabashedly futuristic and architectural design language of the singular skeleton watch.

Highlighted by the open dial with a star-shaped motif, the automatic Elite manufacture calibre has also been given a dark treatment in ruthenium. In spite of its palette of anthracite and black tones, legibility is guaranteed with bright green Super-LumiNova on the blackened hands and applied hour markers.

Price: 19,900 CHF on carbon bracelet. 11,900 CHF on rubber bracelet.

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