For those always on the lookout for another “panda dial”, search no further! While at SIHH 2017 just swing by the Zenith booth and feast your eyes on two new iterations of their iconic best-selling “El Primero” model.


Image courtesy of: Zenith

These twin timepieces are quite fetching in their understated demeanor. Equipped with a chiaroscuro three-counter dial and attached to a sporty black perforated rubber strap. All adorning one of the world’s most accurate series-made chronograph, famously known as the “El Primeiro”. A quite recognizable from afar timepiece, many horologists are proud to have in their collections.


Image courtesy of: Zenith

The 42mm case is made of aluminum, but since that material scratches easily they’ve been given a ceramic coating; Zenith calls this material “ceramicised aluminum”. It has a transparent caseback that allows to view the inner workings of this mechanical movement. Also features long lugs for a relaxed fit, round push-pieces to activate the chronograph functions, and a knurled crown with the Zenith “star” logo engraved on it. Water-resistance on this watch can reach up to 100m (330 feet).

Zenith -2017-Panda Dial-03

Image courtesy of: Zenith

Time is exhibited on two variations of this sun-ray patterned dial: either matte black with silvery white sub-dials or white with matte black sub-dials. Both versions use a black and white color scheme, hence the moniker “panda dial”. A much appreciated and coveted color scheme for most horology enthusiasts, due to its versatility to match up well with various attire options.


Image courtesy of: Zenith

Its chronograph central hand and two sub-dial hands contain red highlighted tips; while it makes use of black faceted hour index markers all around. Hands and markers have undergone a luminescent coating, for an enhanced legibility. The three sub-dials are a: 30-minute counter at the 3 o’clock position, a 12-hour counter at the 6 o’clock position and a sub-seconds at the 9 o’clock position. A tachymeter scale circles around the outer rim of the dial near the bezel. Covering the whole surface is a domed “box style” sapphire crystal that lends the watch a vintage look. There is also a date aperture at the 6 o’clock position.


Image courtesy of: Zenith

Zenith El Primero 36,000 VPH

This “Zenith El Primero 36,000 VPH” (References below) is powered by a self-winding mechanical movement, caliber 400B with 31 jewels, 328 components and 36,000 vph. Featuring a high-frequency column-wheel and an oscillating weight. It differs from the caliber 400 movement due to its altered date position. Power reserve on this timepiece can last up to 50 hours, when fully wound.


Image courtesy of: Zenith

Mounted to the watch is a perforated black rubber strap, secured to the wrist by a titanium and black PVD-coated triple folding clasp.


Image courtesy of: Zenith

Ref#: 24.2041.400/21.R576 – Silvery white with black sub-dials


Image courtesy of: Zenith

Ref#: 24.2041.400/01.R576 – Black dial with silvery white sub-dials

MSRP: $8,600.00 USD

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Zenith, El Primero, SIHH, SIHH 2017, Panda Dial, Luxury Watches

Written by Mauro Az