By Dhananjay Pathak
When Omega released the Speedmaster back in 1957 they must not have anticipated that it would go ahead to become the cult classic it is today. Initially launched as a sports and racing chronograph the Speedmaster eventually went ahead to become the reason behind Omega’s association with the American space history in the form of the Omega Speedmaster Professional aka Moonwatch. And while there is just one version of the famous Moonwatch, Omega has been kept things interesting by coming up with several limited edition variants of the Omega Speedmaster Professional and today we have some interesting news for you in this regard. The next Olympics games are slated to take place in Tokyo in 2020 and while there are still around 2 years to go for the even Omega has launched not one but five new limited edition watches to celebrate the upcoming event.
But before we talk about what’s special about these new limited edition Speedmasters, let’s have a look at what do they have in common. The Omega Speedmaster is a watch which is instantly recognizable from a distance courtesy of its dial layout and tachymeter bezel and these new watches cannot be mistaken for anything else. The new Tokyo Olympics 2020 limited edition Speedmasters are based upon the famous and ever so loved Moonwatch, implying that they have the same 42mm asymmetrical case design with the twisted lug structure. The powerhouse behind these watches comes in the form of the manually wound caliber 1861 which comprises 17 jewels and offers a power reserve of around 48 hours. Moving to the dial you are greeted with the popular tri-compax layout which the Moonwatch is famous for, but this time around we have new color variations representing the Olympics theme. The dial is protected by a sapphire crystal up top, which is surrounded by a tachymeter bezel and flipping the watch over one would encounter a closed case back with a deeply stamped Tokyo Olympics 2020 motif along with the five Olympic rings. With common ground out of the way, let’s take a closer look at the individual references.
Omega Speedmaster Tokyo Olympics Blue – 5126.96.36.199.03.001
This variant as the name suggests features a brushed blue dial with sub-registers in a highly contrasting white color and a blue tachymeter scale. And just in case you are wondering, yes the blue color of this watch is quite similar to the one found on the Omega Speedmaster Gemini IV limited edition released in 2006. The applied hour markers and the handset have a silver finish to them that really pops against the blue background and there is also some splash of color in the form of the red Speedmaster text and the red elongated tip of the chronograph seconds hand. In case we were to select the most versatile version out of these five watches this would be it.
Omega Speedmaster Tokyo Olympics Gold – 5188.8.131.52.01.001
This iteration of the Speedmaster Tokyo Olympics basically represents the yellow ring on the Olympics flag and hence certain aspects of the watch have been rendered in a golden tone. The hour markers, the border of the subdials, the entire handset, the crown and pushers, and the applied Omega logo on this watch have been made out of yellow gold and provide an excellent contrast against the textured black dial. Also, the entire printing on this dial except for the Speedmaster text has been done in a golden color to match the rest of the gold accents on the watch. This is our opinion is the dressiest version out of this lot and would be a fan favorite among those who really prefer to suit up every now and then.
Omega Speedmaster Tokyo Olympics Green – 5184.108.40.206.06.001
Similar to the Black/Gold version this reference also makes use of a golden tone but this time around it’s a little muted. For this watch, Omega have used their proprietary rose gold alloy called Sedna gold for the hour markers, the sub-dial borders, the handset and the crown as well as the chronograph pushers. The dial has a grey color tone which complements the golden accents quite well but it does look a little lackluster and this is certainly the kind of watch which has to be seen in person to ascertain whether this combination works in real life or not. And finally, you have the green colored tachymeter bezel representing the green Olympic ring.
Omega Speedmaster Tokyo Olympics Panda – 5220.127.116.11.04.001
Panda dials have long been favorites amongst collectors from the watch fraternity. So what happens when a brand like Omega offers a panda dial configuration in a legendary watch like the Speedmaster? Well, it simply flies off the shelves making it seem as if it didn’t ever exist. While it might sound like we are exaggerating things here but, this is certainly going to be the most sought after watch out of this lot. The black subdials along with the tachymeter scale truly stand out against the white background and the all steel case and bracelet completes the sports watch look. So, in case you have been lusting after a Panda dial this could be a unique opportunity to own one.
Omega Speedmaster Tokyo Olympics Red – 518.104.22.168.06.001
Last but not the least we have the final limited edition Tokyo Olympics Speedmaster. This watch represents the red Olympics ring through its deep red colored tachymeter bezel providing a nice contrast to the silver dial which has a sandblasted finish to it. As all the indices, along with the handset has also been finished in silver which kind of makes it a little less playful as compared to the other models on this list, But then again we would only be sure once on this once we have handled these in person.
So, in case you have been on the lookout for a Speedmaster but haven’t been able to decide on one yet, we would certainly recommend looking these limited edition Tokyo Olympics Speedmasters as you might find what you have been looking for. But before you visit your local Omega dealer to try on one of these, let us break the sad news to you that these watches are being released only in the Japanese market. So, you better hurry and book your flights to Japan, as there are only 2020 pieces of each would be made along with a special set of 5 watches which would be limited to 55 pieces. Also, the steel models would be priced at JPY 680,400 whereas the two-tone models would retail at a price of JPY 842,400. Visit Omega here.