Swiss watchmaker Zenith has jumped into bed with Britain’s Land Rover, and the result is the El Primero Range Rover Special Edition chronograph, the first in what both companies say is a long-term partnership.
The El Primero first appeared in the Zenith catalogue in 1969, the year the two-door Range Rover prototype broke cover. El Primero means the ‘the first’ in Esparento, an artifical language conceived in Europe in 1887.
“The match between our two brands is very strong,” said Zenith in a statement. “Zenith and Range Rover are both pioneers in our respective industries, and we both create unique, innovative products.
“Through timeless design, both brands express authentic luxury. The Zenith team is very excited to start this long-term partnership with Range Rover, another superb brand and kindred spirit.”
The El Primero Range Rover special edition chrono can be seen as a tribute to what was the first luxury SUV, with a brushed grey dial bearing the inscription – in fairly subtle type – “Zenith Range Rover”.
The hands and hour-markers are rhodiumed and luminescent. The well-known high-frequency (36,000 vph) El Primero mechanism is a 326-part affair with a 50-hour power reserve. It’s housed in matt black ceramised aluminium bodywork – a nod to the Range Rover chassis – and spans 42 mm.
Water-resistant to 100 metres and topped by a cambered sapphire crystal, the watch has a ratcheted crown and black pushers. A sapphire caseback bearing a “El Primero Range Rover / Special Edition” engraving reveals the mechanics and an oscillating weight again carrying the Zenith and Range Rover logos.
- Zenith began business in 1865. It celebrated its 150th anniversary last year and over the years has produced special-edition watches for historic events. The El Primero Range Rover is priced at US$7700.