Oris Introduces the ProPilot X Caliber 400

Oris Introduces the ProPilot X Caliber 400

In recent years Oris, like so many watch brands, has been dominated by its past. The Divers Sixty-Five has been an incredible success story, seeing numerous variations over its now seven-year history. It’s a model that rode the wave of nostalgia and has done a great deal of good work in spreading the word of Oris and their no-nonsense approach to watchmaking. But, like all waves, our love of nostalgia is petering out, and Oris needs new offerings in a more modern style to sit alongside the Sixty-Five. This is where the ProPilot X comes in. Initially announced in 2019, this sporty, faceted titanium watch on a smoothly integrated bracelet offered a very 21st-century update for their classic Big Crown Pilot line. The original version offered not only a modern take on the pilot’s form, but it also offered a heavily openworked dial, showing off the 10-day hand-wound caliber 115 to full effect. All told it was a bold, daring piece of watchmaking that sends a loud message about Oris’s vision of the future.

Last year, Oris added another layer to that message with the somewhat surprising announcement of the caliber 400, an Oris-owned movement with a suite of specifications and features that offered something well beyond what many expect from the value-oriented brand. Five days of power reserve, 10-year service interval, 10-year warranty, improved accuracy. Oris has worked on their own movements before, but caliber 400 is different. It’s a next-generation workhorse that will serve them well for decades to come. It also represents a jump in the ever-increasing autonomy race. Most ébauche-powered Oris watches give around 42 hours of power, compared to the 70-odd that has become the new industry normal. Caliber 400 betters that standard by a significant amount and is, to my mind, one of the most exciting, potential-filled mechanical developments the Swiss watch industry has seen for a few years.

With the ProPilot X Calibre 400, these two developments converge — and boy, do they come together in style. Cased in titanium, coming in at 39mm (down from 44mm) and in three different dials, this new take on the ProPilot X is made to win over wrists in a big way.

Clear lines and clear facets define the case of the Oris ProPilot X Calibre 400 (Image: Revolution©)
Clear lines and clear facets define the case of the Oris ProPilot X Calibre 400 (Image: Revolution©)
With a noticeable textured and plain,clear printing, the dial of this Oris favour legibility (Image: Revolution©)
With a noticeable textured and plain,clear printing, the dial of this Oris favour legibility (Image: Revolution©)
The coin-edge bezel is a hallmark of Oris' ProPilot family (Image: Revolution©)
The coin-edge bezel is a hallmark of Oris' ProPilot family (Image: Revolution©)
The innovative, patterned 'lift' system clasp keeps the watch securely attached (Image: Revolution©)
The innovative, patterned 'lift' system clasp keeps the watch securely attached (Image: Revolution©)

While the elements that comprise this new watch are already known quantities, in combination, there’s a little bit to unpack. Size, as we know, matters, and Oris is coming out of the gate strong. There’s a reason 39mm is commonly called the Goldilocks size — it works so well on a range of wrists, and for those concerned it might lack the presence of a larger diameter, don’t be too concerned; the angular geometry and wide silhouette of the case suggest that it will wear very well indeed, and thanks to the titanium construction it won’t weigh the wrist down. Keeping on the cosmetics, the dial choices here are fascinating. The design is pretty classic ProPilot — long hands and fairly plain dial printing with batons and minute markers, keeping things simple and readable. The texture appears to be quite matte, even a little grainy, which will add some much-needed texture to an otherwise straight-up-and-down dial. What really stand out are the color choices. For a debut collection, you’d expect a brand to go pretty conservative — a dark option, a light option, and a “fun” option, likely a blue or green given the current fashions. And in a way, Oris has delivered on this promise, but they’ve done it in typical Oris fashion, offering gray, blue or salmon dials. The gray is only slightly darker than the case metal, and creates a very sleek monochrome look, accented by the black dial printing and date wheel. The blue bucks against type a little, eschewing the safer navy options for something with a little more teal in it. Blue dials used to be an option with a bit of personality, but they’ve become so de rigueur recently that this isn’t really the case anymore. Well, with their unusual blue tone, Oris has brought the personality back to blue, but not as much personality as the salmon, it must be said. Typically a salmon dial has a metallic sheen, but this guy is far closer to pink — bright, warm and something you won’t see too often. It’s not just a bold color, but a bold choice for Oris – one of many that add up to this being a standout option for an unconventional daily wearer.

Of the three dial options, the blue is the most under-the-radar (Image: Revolution©)
Of the three dial options, the blue is the most under-the-radar (Image: Revolution©)
Oris ProPilot X Calibre 400

Tech Specs

Oris ProPilot X Calibre 400
Oris ProPilot X Calibre 400
Oris ProPilot X Calibre 400

Movement: Self-winding Oris caliber 400; anti-magnetic; 120 hours of power reserve
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, date
Case: 39mm; titanium; 100m water resistance; gray, blue or salmon dials
Strap: Titanium, with patented “LIFT” system clasp
Price: CHF 3900

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Felix Scholz

Felix Scholz has spent the last decade covering watches from his home in Australia. Given this, it's surprising that he still struggles with time zones. Over the years he's become a firm believer that less is more when it comes to watch design – except when a rainbow bezel is involved. He's written for numerous titles including Hodinkee, GQ, A Collected Man and more. These days he looks after the Australian edition of Revolution and takes a break from writing about watches to talk about them, as the co-host of OT: The Podcast.

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