The Original, the iconic watch of Victorinox Swiss Army, dons a new look in 2013. Still military-inspired, monochrome in tone and effortlessly easy to read, it is now modernized and urbanized by a new modular leather strap. The color is reminiscent of the case of the original Swiss Army Officer’s knife. The chronograph version, in a limited series of 1989 pieces, is endowed with an additional element: a removable hood, also in leather, that can completely encase it.
The Original occupies a special place among the watch collections of Victorinox Swiss Army. It is the very first model of the watchmaker house, launched in the United States in 1989. Since, it has never left the catalog, rising to the rank of a true icon. It has constantly evolved over the years, yet has always maintained the strengths and values of the brand: simplicity, clarity, assertive design, superior quality, durability and attractive price.
The Original now comes in two forms. The Original is a watch with three hands and a date window, animated by a Ronda quartz movement. The Original Chronograph has three central hands, date window at 4 o’clock, three sub-dials and an ETA quartz chronograph movement.
The military origin and monochrome color of the two models in no way gives them a severe aspect. On the contrary, subtle details indicate that they have long since left the wrist of soldiers for those of active urbanites seeking a more contemporary and versatile watch. The brushed aluminum bezel gives a trendy touch. The second hand (central seconds hand) is adorned with a delicate touch of orange. Finally, the NATO fiber strap has been replaced by a stylish twopiece leather (Original) or three-piece (Original Chronograph) strap, giving a completely new look.
In both versions, the natural leather strap can be worn in the traditional way, or else with the addition of a cuff that fits over the base strap with two loops. The chronograph – a limited and numbered series of 1989 pieces (the number refers to the year of birth of the first model) – has an additional design element: a removable hood, also in leather, covering the housing assembly. This casing is a nod to the military wristwatches of the first half of the 20th century, which were protected by a grille or a lid. Today, it is a stylish accessory. The two- and three-part straps also pay homage to Victorinox’s famous Swiss Army Officer Knife, whose original case was manufactured in leather of the same color.
The watch’s military DNA is also expressed through its 40mm “dark grey” case, forged in an ultra-shock-proof nylon whose lightness is only matched by its robustness. The crown protection indicates that this is watch capable of enduring harsh conditions. The dial design has been conceived to provide maximum legibility. Indexes and numerals are oversized and look stencil drawn – like the lettering on a box of ammunition. Recessed and covered with luminescent material, they stand out with great clarity. The Original model also displays military time. The Original Chronograph version features three counters (1/10th of a second, 60 seconds and 30 minutes) and the traditional buttons on the right side.
Original Chronograph Version (limited edition 1989 pieces)
40 mm (same size for both versions), in “dark grey” nylon
Water-resistant to 100 meters (10 ATM / 330 feet)
“Dark Grey” Aluminum bezel
Stainless steel screwed-in caseback
Dials & Strap
Original: Dark grey dial, with military hours, and straps Brown leather strap
Original Chronograph: Dark grey dial, with brown leather strap and adjustable protective cover Skeleton hands, luminescent hands, numbers, and markers
Original: Swiss Made Quartz movement, Ronda 515
Original Chronograph: Swiss Made Quartz movement, ETA G10-211
Functions: 1/10e of second counter at 2 o’clock, 60 seconds at 6 o’clock, 30 minutes at 10 o’clock