This watch’s name, Grande Seconde, and its dial design with two intersecting circles, one small, one larger, immediately bring to mind Jaquet Droz. As they are both Swatch Group brands, presumably no-one minds. In addition to the dial with its Clou de Paris texture and the small mobile anchor that is the hallmark of all Rado watches, the other principal characteristic of this watch is its material, plasma ceramic that is made in a plasma kiln in which gases reach a temperature of 20,000 degrees celsius, while the white ceramic components are brought up to 900 degrees, giving them a metallic colour and sheen. The case treated in this way retains the other characteristics of Rado’s high-tech ceramics, lightness, hardness, scratch resistance and warmth to the touch. The case is 43.0 x 51.2 mm in size, a flattened circle in shape, and it is fairly slim at 11.8 mm, slim enough to slip under a shirt cuff, Its profile looks curiously like a pan in shape: the attractive appearance is enhanced by the fluid lines and the continuity of case and lugs. The watch has a leather strap with a stainless steel extensible folding clasp, and it is water-resistant to 100 metres.
After the ceramic touch technology based on electronics and quartz that dominated last year’s collection, this year the movements are mechanical. This watch has an ETA 2899 movement, based on the 2892, providing off-centre seconds and date at 9 o’clock. The movement is displayed by the sapphire window in the titanium caseback, off-centred, revealing the characteristic anchor-shaped oscillating weight that mirrors the swivelling anchor on the dial.
Reference and price
The Rado DiaMaster Grande Seconde is made in two versions, reference 657.0129.3.412 with silver-coloured dial and grey strap, and reference 657.0129.3.410 with white dial and brown strap. The watch costs €2,820.
Below, reference 657.0129.3.412: