If you like Panerai watches but don’t like their prices, Rado‘s new HyperChrome 1616 offers the same sort of style at a fraction of the cost. Its cushion shape and prominent crown protector contribute to its distinctive looks. This piece is a new version of the brand’s Cape Horn collection, and it has a large, almost square 46mm case, 13.7mm thick, in titanium with an extra-wide leather strap. The leather is treated so that even when new, it looks aged. The titanium is given improved scratch resistance by a hardening treatment similar to that used by the brand for its ceramic watches, giving it a non-scratch rating of 1,000 Vickers, five times harder than the usual steel used for watches. Titanium also makes the watch much lighter because it is half the weight of steel.
The dial has applied indices in gold-coloured metal, and the hallmark revolving logo device is positioned above the central pivot. The arrangement of day and date in the vertical window at 6 o’clock is unusual, visually attractive but not all that easy to read.
The self-winding movement is one of the new-generation ETA calibres, C07.621, providing 80 hours power reserve. This piece has a titanium caseback and so nothing of the movement can be seen.
Price and reference
The Rado HyperChrome 1616 in titanium is reference 764.0172.3.101. Price €2,930.