When talking about watches, few names carry as much weight as Gérald Genta. Known for his revolutionary designs that shaped the luxury sports watch category, Genta's influence continues to ripple through time. Now, Credor, a specialized branch of Seiko, has breathed new life into one of Genta's lesser-known creations: the Locomotive.


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Originally introduced in 1979, the Credor Locomotive was a stainless steel sports watch that diverged from Genta's more famous integrated bracelet designs. Today, as Credor celebrates its 50th anniversary, the brand has unveiled a reimagined Locomotive that pays homage to Genta's vision while embracing modern luxury and craftsmanship.

The new Locomotive's lineage is unmistakable. Its hexagonal bezel, secured by matching screws, and the overall angular silhouette instantly evoke the aesthetic zeitgeist of the 1970s. However, Credor has elevated the watch beyond its sporty roots, crafting it from lightweight yet durable titanium. This material choice, coupled with a screw-down crown and 100-meter water resistance, signals the watch's readiness for active lifestyles.


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At the heart of the Locomotive beats the automatic CR01 movement, a significant upgrade from the original's quartz powerplant. This three-hand caliber with date function operates at 28,800 vibrations per hour and provides a 45-hour power reserve. Housed in a svelte 38.8mm case measuring just 8.9mm thick, the Locomotive strikes a balance between presence and wearability.

The dial is where the Locomotive truly distinguishes itself. Credor has employed an intricate pattern of 1,600 radial lines, creating a mesmerizing effect reminiscent of ripples on a tranquil lake. This visual poetry is framed by the gleaming hexagonal bezel, its top surface brushed to contrast with polished sides—a hallmark of fine finishing.

Genta himself chose the name "Locomotive," envisioning the watch as a driving force that would propel brand identity into the future through bold design. This philosophy is evident in the bracelet, which, while not fully integrated, connects to the case via a single, distinctive element. The result is a hybrid that nods to the integrated bracelet trend without being beholden to it. A single-deployant clasp with a push-button release secures the bracelet, prioritizing both security and ease of use.


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The story behind the Locomotive's creation adds depth to its reintroduction. Evelyne Genta, the late designer's wife, shared that the original watch was commissioned by Reijiro Hattori, a member of Seiko's founding family. Hattori's admiration for Genta's work led to a personal invitation to Japan, where Genta gave inspirational talks to the Seiko team. This relationship blossomed into mutual respect, with Genta considering it an honor to work for a Japanese manufacturer.

In fact, it was Hattori who encouraged Genta to start his own brand after being impressed by six perpetual calendar watches Genta had created. These pieces were exhibited at Wako, Seiko's prestigious retail space, before being sold to Japanese collectors. Hattori's belief in Genta's talent gave the designer the confidence to put his own name on his creations, a pivotal moment in horological history.

The 2024 Credor Locomotive is not merely a reissue but a thoughtful evolution. Limited to 300 numbered pieces, it will be available exclusively through the Grand Seiko boutique at Place Vendôme in Paris starting August, with a price tag of €14,000. This exclusivity underscores the watch's significance and collectibility.

Evelyne Genta's endorsement of the new Locomotive is perhaps the highest praise it could receive. She believes her husband would have loved the watch for its faithful adherence to his original sketch and its ability to capture the subtleties of his design. In her words, it represents "the perfect evolution of the original," containing much of Gérald Genta's creative DNA.


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As the Locomotive chugs back into the spotlight, it serves as a reminder of Genta's vast repertoire beyond his most famous works. It also highlights Credor's commitment to craftsmanship and its place within the Seiko universe as a brand dedicated to rare and precious timepieces. The name Credor, derived from the French "Créte d'Or" or "pinnacle of gold," aptly describes both the brand's ethos and the Locomotive's position as a golden opportunity for collectors and enthusiasts alike.

In resurrecting the Locomotive, Credor has not only honored a design icon but also reignited interest in a period of watchmaking history often overshadowed by more famous models. As this titanium tribute embarks on its journey, it carries with it the legacy of Gérald Genta, the vision of Credor, and the enduring allure of timeless design.

June 13, 2024 — Jeremiah A