BY JOVAN KRSTEVSKI
Seiko unveiled the KSK SJE083, a rather expensive limited edition reissue of the first 44KS model in late 2020. For many, the 44KS represented the first real application of Toro Tanaka’s 1960s-era Seiko design concept known as the “Grammar of Design”. Just over a year later, Seiko unveiled five brand-new, full-production King Seiko models that were significantly more affordable in an entirely new 39mm size for the storied design. A year after its successful relaunch, Seiko has just now launched the faithful successors to the continued lineage of King Seiko with the release of King Seiko 39mm SPB369, SPB371 and SPB373.
Despite having dials that are larger than those of their 37mm predecessors, the three new watches still have a graceful feel to them thanks to nuanced manufacturing and design improvements. For instance, to improve legibility, the indexes are bolder and have an extra facet to better reflect light. While the angular sides are polished and the lugs are wider, the upper surface now has a hairline finish, which heightens the case’s contrast. Additionally, the bezel’s side is mirror polished, and the top now has a hairline finish.
The three models are all forged from stainless steel and have a slightly larger 39mm x 11.9mm size profile. The brushed and polished surfaces highlight the case at varying angles. The three new models have criss-cross pattern white and sunray-brushed dark blue and green dials. A subtle pattern resembling the dials of some vintage King Seiko watches has been crafted into the white dial using a combination of vertical and horizontal hairline finishing techniques. The new case diameter is enhanced by the rich, opulent feel of the sunray-finished dark blue and green dials. The new King Seiko watches are less retro and tread more modern territory with these dials and dimensions. The models have solid screw casebacks, box-shaped sapphire crystals with anti-reflective coating and 100m water resistance.
The 6Rxx series’ newest avatar Calibre 6R55 drives the three King Seiko models. An in-house automatic movement beating at 21,600 vibrations/hour and offering a slightly higher 72h power reserve, which equates to 3 days.
The King Seiko SPB369, SPB371, and SPB373 all come with the same seven-link bracelet as the 37mm King Seiko watches, so the bracelets are interchangeable. They have deployment clasp with push button release for extra measure and ease. The models are part of a permanent collection, available from March 2023 with a price tag of EUR 1,950.
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