This year’s Olympic games in London are significant for Omega for several reasons. One is that 2012 marks the 80th anniversary of the first Olympic games for which Omega was official timekeeper. Another is the last games held in the city of London, in 1948, saw the introduction of several sports timekeeping innovations pioneered by the brand. Finally, this year will be Omega’s 25th Olympic Games as official timekeeper. And in keeping with recent tradition, the brand will introduce a trio of special timepieces to celebrate.
All three are Seamaster models — appropriate, since the Seamaster made its debut in the last London Olympics year of 1948. Two are three-hand watches with dates and the third is a chronograph. All have the “London 2012″ Olympic emblem stamped on the caseback to identify them as special editions.
The Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra Co-Axial Chronograph “London 2012″ makes a great impression with its hefty 44-mm case and blue-PVD-coated dial, which sports the Aqua Terra line’s characteristic vertical striped teak pattern. One version has a combination rose-gold/steel case and a blue leather strap that matches the dial; the other is an in all-stainless-steel case with matching bracelet. The chronograph records up to 30 minutes (on a subdial at 3 o’clock) and up to 12 hours (on the one at 6 o’clock). The small seconds counter is at 9 o’clock and the date is in a window at 4:30. The hands for hours, minutes, and chronograph seconds are made of 18k gold, polished, brushed and faceted; they are also treated with white Super-LumiNova for readability in the dark. The sapphire crystal is domed, scratch-resistant and nonreflective on both sides. The model with rose-gold-and-steel case retails for $10,500; the stainless-steel model is $7,600.
The other Aqua Terra watch, the Seamaster Aqua Terra Co-Axial “London 2012,” is intended for ladies and is also available in two executions, one with a bicolor yellow gold/stainless steel case with a blue leather strap and the other in stainless steel with steel bracelet. This model also has a blue PVD dial, with white Super-LumiNova on the hands as well as on the applied indices (both in 18k gold). Here, the date window is at 3 o’clock. The watch has a smaller case than the chronograph — 34 mm in diameter — and contains Omega’s in-house caliber 8520, equipped with the brand’s trademark co-axial escapement and and antimagnetic, shock-resistant silicon balance spring. Prices are $7,000 for the bicolor edition and $5,700 for the stainless steel.
The third piece in the collection, the Seamaster 1948 Co-Axial “London 2012″ Limited Edition, directly commemorates the London games of 1948. Its design is based on the very first Seamaster with an automatic movement. The stainless steel case is 39 mm in diameter, with brushed and polished finishing, and has a polished bezel and lugs. The crown is embossed with the Greek letter “Omega,” which once served as the brand’s emblem. The caseback is topped off by a yellow-gold medallion sporting the London 2012 Olympic logo. The dial is opaline silver, with a small seconds subdial at 6 0′clock. The vintage-style, applied “Omega” logo on the dial is of 18k white gold; white gold is also used for the Arabic numerals and hour markers. The hour and minute hands are diamond-polished and the small seconds hand is blued. The movement is Omega’s Caliber 2202, an officially certified chronometer with co-axial escapement and free-sprung balance. The watch, which has a black leather strap with polished, stainless steel buckle, is being produced in a limited production of 1,948 pieces (price: $6,800) and comes in a special London 2012 games presentation box.