Zenith presents a new vintage series: the Heritage 146 chronograph inspired by a 1960s watch and now equipped with an El Primero movement. It features a retro look, a tropical brown or blue dial, a 38 mm-diameter steel case and a column-wheel El Primero movement chronometer-certified by the COSC. Subtly reinterpreting an historical model, the Heritage 146 is a unique offering combining the best of the Manufacture’s past: design, history and true rarity. As one of the first historical watchmakers to be organised as a full-fledged Manufacture, Zenith has a legacy of more than 150 years upon which to draw. It naturally celebrates this heritage by periodically relaunching some of its iconic vintage models. The 1960s model was equipped with Calibre 146D featuring a balance-wheel oscillating at a rate of 18,000 vibrations/hour, ensuring a 38-hour power reserve and displays of the hours, minutes, with small seconds at 9 o’clock. Like the HODINKEE limited edition in 2016, the new Heritage 146 offers a chronograph with central sweep-seconds hand and 30-minute counter at 3 o’clock, as well as a tachymetric scale. This two-counter dial without a date window reflects a configuration typical of 1960s chronographs; The model also displays the distinctive graduated scale on the minutes’ counter, highlighting the 3, 6 and 9 numerals corresponding to the minutes charged for telephone conversations at the time the original was made.
The case of this exclusive edition now frames two dial options: tropical brown or blue sunray-patterned with rhodium-coated baton hands. However, its key difference lies in the fact that it beats to the lively rhythm of 36,000 vibrations per hour, dictated by the automatic high-beat El Primero Calibre 4069. Regulated and adjusted to meet chronometer standards, this COSC-certified 254-part column-wheel chronograph calibre wound by an oscillating weight adorned with “Côtes de Genève” drives an extremely accurate tenth-of-a-second display and has an over 50-hour power reserve. Its high-frequency mechanism is housed in a 38 mm-diameter vintage-style steel case that is water-resistant to 50 meters and features a fluted crown as well as two round pushers. The screw-down sapphire crystal caseback has an anti-reflective treatment on both sides. The final touch is set by a racing-style strap in a choice of brown or blue rubber-lined calfskin leather. Vintage chronograph lovers are bound to find it irresistible!