The Best Titanium Watches Currently Available — Top 10 From Longines, Omega, Grand Seiko, And More
Last week, we published a list of the best titanium dive watches currently available. Obviously, though, the use of titanium is not limited to just those. This follow-up article will look at the best titanium timepieces that are not dive watches. The number of titanium offerings from all the brands out there is pretty overwhelming. There is a titanium timepiece for everyone from the affordable to the really expensive brands. So let’s take a look at ten outstanding titanium timepieces currently available.
In last week’s article, it only made sense to connect titanium to dive watches. The properties of titanium make the material the perfect fit for adventures in the deep. In particular, the fact that titanium is corrosion-resistant and extremely lightweight makes the material perfect for dive watches. But as we all know, the use of titanium is not limited to just one category. We have seen an abundance of great titanium watches come out in the last couple of years. This is why we decided to create a Top 10 list of the best titanium currently available. As always, it’s definitely not a definitive list, merely a list of watches we love. Let it serve as a gateway to hearing about all the great titanium timepieces out there.
Grand Seiko SBGA413 “Shunbun”
First off, Grand Seiko deserves a list of its own filled with its best titanium timepieces. If anything, Grand Seiko has shown that titanium can look equally as stunning in its execution and finishing as stainless steel. The Japanese brand currently has a wide selection of titanium watches in all of its product lines. Out of all the models, the first pick for many would be the great SBGA211 “Snowflake”. The watch is probably the most well-known Grand Seiko model with a large audience. While I definitely love the “Snowflake”, it is not my favorite titanium Grand Seiko watch. That is actually a tie between the brilliant Evolution 9 GMT SBGE285 “Mist Flake” and the SBGA413 “Shunbun”.
Ask me on a random day, and my answer will be different. Today, however, let’s focus on the SBGA413 “Shunbun” with its stunning pink dial. The dial was inspired by the Japanese spring season when the pink cherry blossoms fall on the water and become hanaikada, or “flower rafts”. The result is simply breathtaking. The dial is combined with the bezel-less 62GS-style case. This brilliantly sculpted 40mm case is 12.8mm thick and 47mm from lug to lug, making it great to wear every day. Inside the case, you will find the Spring Drive caliber 9R65. It has 30 jewels and provides a 72-hour power reserve as well a date function. At €6,700, this is probably my favorite titanium daily wearer.
Bvlgari Octo Finissimo Automatic Titanium
The automatic sandblasted titanium version on a bracelet that came out in 2017 fully embodied the Octo Finissimo in all its brilliance. Following its release, we have seen a rapid expansion of the Octo Finissimo line, with multiple Octo Finissimo Automatic models in steel added to the collection as well. While they might be a more obvious choice for most people, this titanium version is still the watch that lives and breathes the concept perfectly. Let’s have a quick reminder of the watch’s specs. It comes with a 40mm octagonal case that is ultra-thin at 5.15mm. Through the sapphire crystal in the front, you will see the titanium dial with the instantly recognizable font style and small seconds at 7 o’clock. Turn the watch around, and you’ll see the caliber BVL 138 in all its glory. The record-breaking ultra-thin movement with its micro-rotor is a joy to see and delivers 60 hours of power reserve. The Octo Finissimo Automatic is for sale for €16,100 and is still one of my absolute modern favorites.
Laurent Ferrier Sport Auto Blue
When Laurent Ferrier decided to step into the arena of modern luxury sports watches, he did so with the brilliant Grade 5 titanium Sport Auto. The Sport Auto immediately stands out within the category because of its tonneau-shaped case and broad, cushion-shaped bezel. The characteristic case measures 41.5mm in diameter and 12.7mm thick. Add the absolutely wonderful powder-blue dial with its light gradient and the instantly recognizable long indices and Assegai hands, and there is no mistake that this is the Sport Auto. Despite being a bold statement in its overall looks, the great finesse and impeccable eye for detail make this a Laurent Ferrier timepiece in all its essence. If you turn the watch around, you are greeted by the LF 270.01 caliber. It is only Laurent Ferrier’s second automatic movement, and it is beautiful! It operates at 28,800vph and delivers 72 hours of power reserve. As Thor said in his introduction article, bring a loupe, and you’ll forget the list price of CHF 46,000 before taxes within ten seconds. It’s a brilliant piece.
Hamilton Khaki Field Titanium 38mm
Now we move on to something a bit more affordable. Though titanium might be pricier than steel, it is used for watches in all price categories. This year saw the introduction of a series of new Hamilton Khaki Field Titanium Auto watches. They come in 38mm and 42mm sizes, and the smaller version perfectly captures this watch’s charm. Regardless of which size you pick, though, both look great. The 38mm model features a brushed titanium case, and you can choose either a black or green dial. For us, the green-dial version with its orange details easily takes the cake. There is also a black PVD version with a matte gray concrete-like dial. As Dave explained, Hamilton uses its H-10 movement, which is essentially the Swatch Group’s shared Powermatic 80 caliber. It operates at 21,600vph and provides 80 hours of power reserve. Add the great nubuck leather strap, and this watch is an absolute peach at €945.
Longines Avigation BigEye
Longines has been capturing the hearts of many recently, including me. The brand has released a number of seriously cool watches that see a great return to form. I personally love the Spirit Zulu Time GMT, the Ultra-Chron Diver, and the Spirit Titanium, which could have also been on this list. But the first touch of cool for me came in the form of the Avigation BigEye with its stunning blue dial. This brilliant titanium pilot’s chronograph features a 41mm Grade 5 titanium case that is 14.5mm thick and 50mm from lug to lug. So it’s a big boy in size, but thanks to the reduced weight, it wears like a charm. Inside the case, Longines equipped the watch with its automatic L688.2 caliber, based on the ETA A08.L01 with a 54-hour power reserve. But the combination of the titanium case with the blue-to-black dégradé granulated dial, the Arabic numerals and brown lume, and the brown leather strap is simply magical. I loved wearing this when it was in the office, and at €3,730, it is a great-looking titanium chronograph.
URWERK UR-100V Full Titanium Jacket
The look of titanium lends itself well to modern timepieces. One of the absolute best that also happens to be Dave’s grail watch is the URWERK UR-100V Full Titanium Jacket. As Dave explained, URWERK timepieces do not often feature a metal bracelet, but when they do, they sure are special. And this UR-100V Full Titanium Jacket is a perfect example. The watch features a sandblasted titanium case that is 41mm wide, 49.7mm long, and 14mm thick. While the case is already stunning, the integrated bracelet takes it to another level. Composed of 32 separate sandblasted links that look amazing and gently wrap themselves around your wrist, it is a thing of beauty. Inside the case, URWERK uses its caliber 12.02 to drive the carousel carrying the wandering hours on its three satellites. The watch was for sale for a whopping CHF 55,000 excluding taxes. I say “was” because it was a limited edition that sold out. Currently, however, URWERK offers the same watch in full-black titanium that looks stealthy and equally stunning.
Omega Speedmaster X-33 Marstimer
One of this year’s highlights was September’s Speedy Tuesday event at the European Space Agency in Noordwijk, the Netherlands. During the event, Omega unveiled the brilliant Speedmaster X-33 Marstimer. This new X-33 Marstimer is based on the X-33 Skywalker. It has the same 45mm × 14.7mm titanium case and the same bracelet. But the red hematite color of the bezel is inspired by the dust on Mars. I have to say that when I saw the bezel color for the first time, I was genuinely impressed. The color fits the hue of the Grade 2 titanium case and bracelet perfectly. It is truly a beautiful color combination. Additionally, the watch comes with specific functions for tracking time on Mars. In order to do that, Omega developed the new thermo-compensated quartz caliber 5622. It is packed with the same wide array of functions as the X-33 Skywalker with additional Mars-related functions and a solar compass. You can all about it in RJ’s article on the stunning X-33 Marstimer, which can be yours for €7,100.
Zenith Defy Extreme
Zenith is another brand that has a string of brilliant titanium pieces. Unfortunately, most of them are sold-out limited editions, and therefore, they are not eligible for this list. Some examples are the brilliant titanium version of the A3818 “Cover Girl,” the Chronomaster Revival Safari, the A384 Lupin The Third Final Edition, and the brilliant Chronomaster Revival “Poker Chip”. A non-limited production model that really impressed me was the Zenith Defy Extreme that came out last year. It perfectly shows that titanium is the perfect material to make a chunky watch very wearable. The first thing that stands out is the size of this 45mm beast, which is 15.4mm thick. Its industrial looks with the skeletonized dial appear menacing at first. Put it on your wrist, though, and the watch turns out to be super comfortable if you can handle the size. Inside the titanium case, you will find Zenith’s El Primero caliber 9004. The high-beat chronograph movement operates at 36,000vph for standard timekeeping and has a chronograph that operates at an insane 360,000vph to accurately measure elapsed time to 1/100th of a second. At €17,600, this is an impressive but lightweight big boy.
Oris ProPilot X
I’m going to be brutally honest here: the Oris ProPilot X is far from my favorite-looking watch on this list. On top of that, the €3,900 price tag is rather steep for a time-and-date Oris. But in terms of comfort, the ProPilot X is incredibly hard to beat. I tried it out for a few days when we had it in the office for review, and it was hard to take off the wrist. Of the three different dial variations, the dusty pink one is my favorite, with the dark blue one as a good second. But I think there is something about the combo of titanium and pink that works very well. The ProPilot X comes with a 39mm case that is 11.8mm thick with a lug-to-lug of 47mm. The case is accompanied by the super-comfortable, faceted titanium bracelet, equipped with beautifully shaped “integrated” end links and the Oris patented “LIFT” clasp. Visible through the sapphire display case back is the brand’s automatic Calibre 400, which packs an awesome five-day power reserve. Looking at the pictures, I do genuinely miss wearing this Oris ProPilot X.
Citizen Super Titanium CA7090
I will close this list out with the king of titanium. As I explained in last week’s article, Citizen was the brand that introduced us to the first full-titanium watch in 1970, and the brand uses its own Super Titanium for its current titanium offerings. While most of Citizen’s titanium watches are divers in the Promaster collection, there are some great exceptions. Earlier this year, the brand introduced the 1970s-inspired Super Titanium CA7090 chronograph series. The 43mm chronograph is 11.3mm thick and weighs just 92 grams. Its design is characterized by a vertically-lined twin-register layout in black, blue, or red. The dial is inspired by vintage-car speedometers, and the tachymeter is positioned on the rehaut. The Super Titanium CA7090 is powered by the Citizen B642 Eco-Drive caliber with an accuracy of ±15 seconds per month. Overall, this is just a great watch that comes with an integrated bracelet and at a really affordable price of €329. It perfectly shows that titanium doesn’t have to be expensive.
Let’s hear from you
There you have it — our list of the best ten titanium watches currently available (well, with one slight exception that you’ll have to buy in a stealthy black variant). But with many impressive releases, so many great watches could have been on this list. That’s why I am turning the question over to you. What are some of your favorite titanium timepieces that aren’t divers? Please let us know in the comments section.