At last! ....an Omega Aqua Terra GMT powered by one of Omega’s new generation movements. The most recent AT GMT on offer was the chronograph version powered by the Piguet-Based calibre 3603, and while it had the looks, some argued that it didn't have the right movement at its heart. To be officially released during Baselworld 2012 in a matter of weeks, this AT GMT has both: aesthetics uninterrupted by chronograph sub-dials and a GMT modification built on to Omega’s exclusive calibre 8500 series of co-axials. Designated as the Omega Co-Axial series 8605/8615 this is the first of OMEGA’s exclusive ‘in-house’ movements to carry the GMT complication. The movement is equipped with a silicon balance spring and Omega’s confident four-year warranty applies.
I have waxed lyrical on the ATs dial and case design in earlier reviews, so you will not have to endure any lapse into purple prose here, save to reiterate that a GMT complication on a clean dial is so much easier on the eyes than such complications on chronographs – no fairground busy-ness here, just outer and inner chapter rings in complete harmony with the circularity of the dial and the date aperture subtly placed at six o’clock. The GMT register is tucked neatly into the ambit of the applied markers and the GMT hand, marginally longer than the hour hand, is outlined in red to make its twenty-four hour rotation visible but not over-powering. The red touches on the dark teak dial and GMT hand add just the right measure of sportiness to this piece without limiting the occasions on which the watch can be worn.
All dial furniture is either 18k white or red gold, depending on the case metal chosen, and the hands and indices are coated with white Super-Luminova. At 43mm, it’s a big watch and I would have liked to have seen this 2012 offering measure in at around 39 to 40mm, the size of the new Certina DSI release at Baselworld this year. Non-Chronograph case sizes, in general, diminished last year at Baselworld and it will be interesting to see what the trend is in 2012. Ultra thin watches are also making a comeback (check out the new Rado Thin-Line range) and while clunk and chunk will no doubt still reign supreme, keep an eye out for what the cutting edge and style-meisters of watch design are doing.
The AT GMT will be available in Stainless Steel, red gold or two-tone models and can be accessorised by matching bracelets or a choice of black, brown or blue leather straps. Expect the price of the Stainless version to hover around the USD 8,500 mark.