Introducing the New Ulysse Nardin Diver X SkeletonBy Israel Ortega
The thrill of exploration has been the vector that has led Ulysse Nardin by the hand in recent years. The brand’s divers’ watches have been particularly getting all the attention on this new, adventurous journey.
This horological season, Ulysse Nardin’s communication is aimed at exploring new frontiers now anchored in the design of its novel skeletonized watches. This formula — Diver X + Skeleton X— at once defines the theme behind the Diver X Skeleton. The outcome is affectionately called a “horological UFO” by the brand’s CEO Patrick
Like all Ulysse Nardin Diver watches, the Diver X Skeleton is designed to withstand high pressures at a depth of 200 meters. A crucial part of this particularity is the concave inverted rotating bezel, which protects the domed sapphire crystal against untimely impacts.
If something gives a unique character to the latest Ulysse Nardin sports watches is the “X” motif on the dial. This element has permeated gradually in many corners of the brand’s watchmaking, like on the recent Blast. In the Diver X Skeleton, this technical and prominent element is finished in blue PVD. But since legibility cannot be subordinated to design, the architecture had to consider integrating the hour markers properly. Therefore, the indices are connected on the periphery of the dial. In order to achieve a sense of depth, overlapping elements were used to emphasize the staggered construction, and different levels of finishing was used to cause a play of light, which is amplified by the transparency of the skeletonized movement.
The case, finished by micro-beading on the sides and with polished and satin-brushed lugs, has been coated with blue PVD. The orange details add to the watch’s overall attractiveness and sportiness.
The brand’s watchmakers have redesigned the automatic UN-371 caliber. UN had specifically developed this caliber for the striking Executive Skeleton collection, however, it has been improved for the Diver x Skeleton with the addition of an “X” shaped oscillating weight. Also noteworthy is the barrel cover — visible at the 12 o’clock position— made of blue Carbonium, the same material found on the bezel. The Carbonium is already known from the Freak X. This robust substance of aerospace origin is made from very thin carbon fibers that are subjected to high pressures and temperatures to give it its final consistency. Inside the Diver X Skeleton’s emptied dial, the hands are coated with high visibility SuperLuminova for adequate readability underwater.
The Ulysse Nardin Diver X Skeleton comes with a rubber strap in Ocean Blue or Supercharged Orange with an element adorned with the Ulysse Nardin anchor, also in orange. The watch is limited to 175 pieces, all of which are numbered.
Sports watchmaking, particularly today’s divers, is generally determined by two trends: watches inspired by historical legends and traditional designs —the dominant strand by far— and “experiments” that dare to combine bold designs and colors with the functionality expected of divers. The latter are much less abundant but no less deserving of our attention.
Ulysse Nardin has successfully explored both the aspects. Last year’s Blast style paved the way for this new Diver X Skeleton, where technical manufacturing, innovative materials taken from all areas of the industry, and original designs improved an already great tradition of marine watchmaking. Attractive, hi-tech, and colorful. What’s not to like?
Movement: Mechanical, self-winding UN-372; hours, minutes and seconds; extra large silicon oscillator; 21,600 bph; 96-hour power reserve
Case: Carbonium, 44 mm diameter, sapphire crystal, 200-meter water resistance
Strap: Blue or orange rubber
Price: 21,000 CHF; Limited edition of 175 PIECES