NOMOS is a rarity these days – a German brand with in-house movements and affordable prices. In 2014, the company even introduced its own escapement, the swing system, which allowed for independence of Swiss manufacturing. Combine all of this with the popularity of steel sports watches and the latest NOMOS Club Sport Neomatik 42 Date Blue (quite a mouthful) is both a great value and very intriguing. The watch is an evolution of a black dial variant and its new 20mm steel bracelet is custom made. It’s mature, stylish and robust, and an important addition to the brand’s portfolio.
Watches from some brands are instantly recognizable and NOMOS falls into this category. Panerai and Jaquet Droz would also be examples. With a clear influence of the Bauhaus style, NOMOS has been consistent with its design language since its first watches in 1992. The new watch adds a bit of “sport” to the original designs (Tangente, Orion, etc.) along with the other Club models. The case is large for the brand at 42mm in diameter when many range between 36mm and 38mm, although it’s fairly thin at 10.2mm. I’m a fan of the contemporary size and think it’s perfect for such a piece with excellent wrist presence. The entirety of the case is polished with sapphire crystals front and back, and the in-house automatic is on full display. Water resistance is rated at an impressive 300 meters, so it lives up to the sports watch moniker. A cool feature is a red ring surrounding the crown’s stem, which stands out if the crown is unscrewed – important for water enthusiasts.
The black dial of its sister model is replaced with a rich sunburst blue that really changes the character. Oversized Arabic numerals appear every two hours (minus the 6) with baton indices in-between. All are coated with white Super-LumiNova. A recessed seconds sub-dial with a snailed pattern is at 6 o’clock, hence the missing numeral, while a color-matching date window sits at 3 o’clock. A minute track spans the outermost perimeter. Rhodium plated, sword-style hour and minute hands have Super-LumiNova inserts and legibility is excellent, day or night.
The heart of the watch is the in-house DUW 6101 automatic, which is well decorated with Côtes de Genève, perlage, blued screws and an open-worked, bidirectional rotor. It features 27 jewels, beats at 3Hz (21,600vph) and has a 42-hour power reserve. The movement is anything but ordinary with a patented quick set date mechanism and the aforementioned swing system escapement, and it’s adjusted in six positions. It also has a larger than usual date ring on the perimeter that allows a date window to be positioned at the edge of the watch, even on dials larger than 40mm. An aesthetic win for sure.
Finishing things is the custom, three-link bracelet with brushed and polished links. It integrates much better with the case than the black dial counterpart. The NOMOS Club Sport Neomatik 42 Date Blue is well priced at EUR 3,120, USD 3,960, GBP 3,120 or AUD 5,580. In fact, for an in-house German sports watch with a new escapement and patented quick set date, it’s a bargain.