New Releases Watches

Ralph Lauren Launch Safari Chronometer 42mm Collection at New Size

Ralph Lauren Safari Chronometer

When you search for watches on Ralph Lauren’s website, they do themselves a major disservice by initially serving you up a smorgasbord of watches with teddy bears and polo horses on the dial (at least they’re not quartz). Aesthetically, they’re exactly the kind of fashion watches that a serious collector avoids on principle. However, scroll further down the page and you’ll find the Cartier-esque 867, single and double tourbillon watches and what is arguably the coolest watch in the range, the Safari Chronometer (note that it’s a chronometer). Now Ralph Lauren have revisited that last watch with an updated collection, the Safari Chronometer 42mm. 

The update is really very simple, the watch that was only available at 45mm or 39mm is now available at 42mm as well. Compared to the 45mm model it’s an improvement that cannot be understated because it opens up the watch to a huge portion of new collectors. The number of people willing to wear a 42mm watch is much, much larger than those who can pull off a 45mm behemoth. The comfort and wearability are vastly increased. In contrast the 39mm is perhaps a bit small for the bold, chunky design.

Ralph Lauren Safari Chronometer Khaki

The case material is described as black, aged stainless steel, which is apt because the case is indeed black except that around the edges you can see the slight hint of steel below. Presumably this is achieved using a similar technique to Panerai’s Brunito finish where a PVD layer is applied and then manually worn off to create a weathered look. It gives the Safari Chronometer 42mm a used, well loved appearance as if it has been worn on more than a few actual safaris. It also suits the industrial, utilitarian aesthetic of the visible screws on the wide bezel.

Ralph Lauren Safari Chronometer Anthracite
Ralph Lauren Safari Chronometer Anthracite

There are a trio of dials available in the new case. The first is a dark anthracite version with a circular grained texture, equipped with khaki Arabic numerals and an orange seconds hand. Second is a camouflage edition with the same finishing and numerals. Both of those options are presented on leather bund straps. Last up is the inverse of the first model bearing a khaki dial and black hour markers. Instead of a leather strap, this one is presented on a steel bracelet with the same finishing as the case. It feels like an oversize field watch display designed to be hyper legible and precise.

Ralph Lauren Safari Chronometer Camoflauge Green

Precision is the name of the game too because the Safari Chronometer 42mm houses the COSC chronometer certified calibre RL300-1. Being a chronometer is a big deal because it means that the movement has been rigorously tested for accuracy and reliablity in several positions, ensuring high quality. It’s a Ralph Lauren branded version of the Sellita SW300-1a with a boosted 50-hour power reserve. A very respectable movement and one that suits the price. £3,000 for the two strap options and £3,400 for the bracelet one.

Ralph Lauren Safari Chronometer Anthracite
Ralph Lauren Safari Chronometer Camo Green
Ralph Lauren Safari Chronometer Khaki

I think there’s an interesting fusion of concepts incorporated in this watch. A field watch style dial in a large (but not too large) industrial case with a very distinctive type of finishing. A Ralph Lauren with genuine horological legs that collectors can get their teeth into more than your common or garden fashion piece.

Price and Specs:

Model: Ralph Lauren Safari Chronometer
Case: 42.3mm diameter x 11.5mm thickness, black 'aged' stainless steel
Dial: Azure anthracite, camo green or azure khaki
Water resistance: 100m (10 bar)
Movement: Ralph Lauren calibre RL300-1, automatic, 25 jewels, chronometer
Frequency: 28,800 vph (4 Hz)
Power reserve: 50h
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds
Strap: Brown leather (anthracite and camo green dial) or black 'aged' stainless steel bracelet (khaki dial)
Price: £3,000 (strap) and £3,400 (bracelet)

More details at Ralph Lauren.   

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About the author

Michael Sonsino

As Digital Editor for Oracle Time, Michael needs an eye for detail, which makes it a good thing that his twin joys in life are miniatures and watches. He's a lifelong fan of fine timepieces, especially those of a more historic nature - if it has a twist of Art Deco, all the better. Recent purchase: Seiko Prospex 1959 Alpinist Modern Re-Interpretation. Grail watch: Vacheron Constantin Historiques American 1921.