The iconic El Primero collection by Zenith welcomes a new range of sophisticated chronographs embodying the grand tradition of sports chronographs. Presented in three initial versions, the new El Primero Sport model asserts a resolutely masculine personality accentuated by the generous size of its steel case and the eminently sporty nature of its functions. Its distinctive character reflects the very essence of sports watches and naturally makes it part of a proud lineage of timeless models.
Powered by El Primero 400 B calibre, a chronograph movement featuring an integrated column-wheel construction and beating at a cadence of 36,000 vibrations/hour, the new El Primero Sport model has inherited the DNA of the famous 1969 El Primero chronograph, of which it is without doubt an eminently worthy descendant.
Presented in a rugged case with an imposing 45 mm diameter, the new El Primero Sport chronograph is made of stainless steel, the most widely favoured material for top-flight sports timepieces. Its crown and its generous ribbed push pieces ensure optimal grip as well as enhanced security. These are screwed in to guarantee water resistance to a depth of 200 metres. Topped by a domed sapphire crystal, the athletic build of the El Primero Sport model extends through to the ergonomic lugs featuring a sloping design to ensure a perfectly smooth fit on the wrist. The transparent sapphire case-back reveals the fascinating mechanism of the El Primero 400 B calibre and its oscillating weight adorned with a Côtes de Genève motif.
On the dial side, the dynamic nature of the El Primero Sport chronograph is conveyed through a powerful, eminently virile design. Standing out against a a silver-toned or slate grey dial with a lamé hand finish (an updated version of an ancient technique creating a densely textured vertical-brushed pattern) the broad faceted hour-markers, rhodium-finished and coated with Super-LumiNova ® , enable easy readings of the central hours and minutes, swept over by imposing sword-shaped hands. This aesthetic is picked up on the small counter hands that are also faceted and arranged in such a way as to optimise reading. The chronograph sweep-seconds hand, bearing the star emblem, is clad in a deep red echoed by the inscription “36’000 VpH” painted in crimson red in the upper part of the dial. The tachometric scale now appears on the inner bezel ring.
The newcomer to the El Primero collection harbours infinite potential for variations and appears in two dial colours – lame silver-toned and slate grey – matched by three different strap versions. The classically understated first model is fitted with an elegant dark brown alligator leather strap. The second model with its slate grey dial comes on a comfortable steel bracelet featuring brushed central links and polished outer links, exuding a rugged sporting appearance. The third reference presented this year pairs a black dial with a matching rubber strap. Setting the finishing touch to the steel-bracelet version of this refined timepiece is a sophisticated new clasp combining absolute comfort with optimal security.
No list of the qualities possessed by the El Primero 400B calibre powering these three models would be complete without a mention of its kinship to the world’s most precise series-made chronograph, the fabled El Primero designed by Zenith in 1969 and endowed with a set of legendary attributes. This classic chronograph movement ably perpetuates its essential assets, including its integrated column-wheel construction as well as its rate of 36,000 vibrations per hour guaranteeing 1/10 th of a second precision. Combining high frequency with a remarkable more than 50-hour power reserve, the El Primero 400B movement drives central hours and minutes hands, small seconds at 9 o’clock, along with chronograph functions and a 6 o’clock date display.
El Primero 400 B, automatic
Calibre: 13¼‘‘‘ (diameter: 30 mm)
Thickness: 6.60 mm
Frequency: 36,000 vph – (5 Hz)
Power reserve: min. 50 hours
Finishing: oscillating weight adorned with Côtes de Genève motif
Central hours and minutes
Small seconds at 9 o’clock
Date window at 6 o’clock
Chronograph accurate to the nearest
1/10 th of a second
• 12-hour counter at 6 o’clock
• 30-minute counter at 3 o’clock
• Central chronograph seconds hand
• Tachometric scale
Case, Dial and Hands
Diameter: 45 mm
Opening diameter: 39.70 mm
Glass: domed sapphire crystal with anti-reflective treatment on both sides
Back: transparent sapphire crystal
Water resistance: 20 ATM
Dial: lamé silver-toned or slate grey
Hour-markers: rhodium-finished, facetted and coated with Superluminova SLN C1
Hands: rhodium-finished, facetted and coated with Superluminova SLN C1
Straps/Bracelet and Clasp
Brown alligator leather strap (with protective rubber lining), rubber strap, or metal bracelet
Steel triple folding clasp