Grand Seiko in the United States
October 15, 2010
For the 50th anniversary of Grand Seiko six models have been created, including automatic, quartz and Spring Drive powered models. The one (shown above) is the most accurate of these new mechanical Grand Seiko timepieces. It runs at -2/+4 seconds per day, which is slightly better than the Swiss standard for chronometers (COSC certified-chronometer's rate should be between -4/+6 per day).
Seiko is the oldest watch manufacture in Japan, a true manufacture that can make mechanical and quartz movements totally in-house. They clearly produce some amazing pieces, like the Ananta, for example. The Ananta has Seiko's high-end Spring Drive movement in it, and has an extremely smooth seconds hand as a result of that proprietary Seiko technology. In Japan, Seiko has been selling high-end watches for years, but for the United States, Seiko is perceived much differently. And now, after 50 years of selling Grand Seiko in Japan, they will be introducing the brand to numerous markets around the world, including the United States.
The Grand Seiko "SPECIAL" Hi-Beat 36,0000 features a Japanese in-house manufacture movement. The movement beats at a high rate of 36,000 vph (the same rate as the Zenith El Primero). At -2/+4 seconds per day, it is even slightly more accurate than what COSC chronometer certification specifications require (-4/+6 second per day). The movement finishing, assembly, case and materials are all first rate. These timepieces are highly regarded and have been selling consistently in Japan for 50 years now. The list price for the Grand Seiko "SPECIAL" Hi-Beat 36000 model (shown above), is $8,378 (based on today's exchange rates).