There aren’t many luxury watch brands that would dare dip their toes into the world of Japanese manga and anime, but then again, Swiss legend Zenith has always gone against the grain. Since the introduction of the original El Primero in 1969, the watchmaker has pushed boundaries in bold new ways, embracing the collaborative approach usually reserved for sneaker and streetwear culture. Flash-forward 50 years since that inaugural debut and Zenith’s iconic Chronomaster design has transcended horological circles, in more ways than one.
A pop-culture icon, the El Primero first made a bold appearance on the wrist Daisuke Jigen, the partner in crime of Lupin III main character, Arsène Lupin III not long after it was first unveiled. While merely a nod to the watch’s excellence at first, the homage came full circle in 2019, when Zenith became the first manufacture to produce a watch directly inspired by a depiction in a Japanese manga and anime series.
Taking the fictional black, grey and gilt dial that had never actually existed, Zenith turned fantasy into reality by producing the Chronomaster Revival Lupin The Third, complete with an instantly recognizable A384 tonneau-shaped case.
Just a year later, Zenith doubled down with a second white and “panda” dial version and in 2022, the third and final limited edition has arrived, but this time, there is a twist. While the first two iterations were based on fictional pieces that appeared in the Japanese manga, the newest piece has no reference to work off. So instead, Zenith simply put the two dials together. Truly life does imitate art.
Limited to just 250 pieces, the new Chronomaster Revival Lupin The Third – Final Edition combines two dials, each featuring a distinct and asymmetrical half. In a coming together of ideas, the piece combines elements from those seen in the first and final episode of the animated series’ first season.
On one side, you’ll find a semi-glossy black dial with deep grey counters and golden applied markers and hands, while the other is adorned with a creamy-white dial with contrasting black counters in a “panda” configuration with beige SuperLumiNova. Blending two dials into one piece is no mean feat, however, Zenith has managed to capture the aesthetic without letting the two faces bleed into each other.
The Chronomaster Revival Lupin The Third – Final Edition comes in a 37mm steel barrel-shaped case, a reproduction of the 1969 A384 case in proportions and finish. Inside, you’ll find the El Primero automatic high-frequency integrated chronograph calibre, which you can spy through the sapphire display back, which is also engraved with a drawing of Daisuke Jigen.
Limited to just 250 pieces worldwide, the Zenith Chronomaster Revival Lupin The Third – Final Edition is available at Zenith physical boutiques and online boutiques around the world. It is priced at USD$10,000.
Chronomaster Revival Lupin The Third – Final Edition
Examples: Limited edition of 250 pieces.
Movement: El Primero 400 Automatic
Frequency: 36,000 VpH (5 Hz)
Power reserve: min. 50 hours
Functions: Hours and minutes in the centre. Small seconds at nine o’clock.
Material: Brushed Titanium
Dial: Black & white
Water-resistance: 5 ATM