We’ve seen so many promising pieces this year from smaller Swatch Group brands, it was a delight. From Tissot, Longines, Hamilton and of course Certina. Last year when we first visited the brand we did not know what to expect. In 2018 however, things took a different turn. I tend not to look at social media during the fair. I don’t want other colleagues’ posts to spoil the surprise for me. However, I saw the new Certina DS PH200M and I could not wait to put my hands on it. Finally, Certina also decided to take inspiration from one of their largely successful vintage models and the outcome is very pleasing. We always associated Certina with great dive watches that incorporate groundbreaking technicality. It’s no surprise the new Certina DS PH200M also walks this path.
Certina DS in 1967
The first Certina DS (Double Security) PH200M saw the light of the for the first time in 1967 under the reference 5801 117. It had an automatic movement (Certina caliber 25-651) that Certina already used in their previous DS models. That model was water resistant up to 200m, had a screw down crown and a nice crosshair dial with painted indexes. The diameter of the watch was around 40.5mm. Relatively large in those times but of course, we are talking about a tool watch. The watch is pretty rare nowadays and if they do come up for sale they usually fetch a pretty penny, so to speak. Reedition this model is a great move for Certina, a brand formally known as an entry to mid-level within the Swatch Group range that sold nice looking but mostly modern timepieces.
The new DS PH200M is a true successor of the vintage model with vintage-like look and technicality. The case is only a little bit larger at 42.8mm, still water resistant to 200m. The case finish is brushed with a rotating diver bezel, screw down crown and case back. The back, by the way, has the same turtle logo as the vintage model. Inside the DS PH200M is the Swatch Group favorite ETA Powermatic 80 movement which has a date (at 3 o’clock) just like the original, and the famous 80 hours of power reserve. The dial is lacquered black and has the same type of crosshair motif as the vintage model, both in red. That is the same color the second hand is painted too, while the original Certina DS PH200M had a white second hand.
The watch comes in a nice protective case-looking presentation box with an extra strap. You have a nato and a leather calf strap. DS is not only an indication coming from the vintage model. Certina still uses a similar technology to protect the movement from large shocks. DS technology allows to the movement to move inside the case in case of an impact, kind of like a suspension. Though the best thing about the DS PH200M is not all the above but the price point Certina will be offering this model: the retail price will be €695 (German retail price). The watch will be available around September this year. It is a bit late but it’s due to the fact that Certina wants to reproduce the same DS technology in the watch which is not common in the industry these days it would take time.
If you want to know more about vintage Certina watches, visit this great resource on them.
More information via Certina on-line.