New Releases Watches

Sail the Italian Lakes with New Frederique Constant Classics Runabout Automatic Blue

Frederique Constant Classics Runabout

The Frederique Constant Classics Runabout is a watch I think more people should know about. It’s a very classic dress watch inspired by small boats on the Italian lakes called runabouts, which gives it a slightly sporty quality based on sunny days out on the lake. It feels almost like a hybrid between Frederique Constant’s purebred dress watches and the Highlife collection. Now the Frederique Constant have released a new edition of the Classics Runabout Automatic in blue.

Frederique Constant Classics Runabout

Straight out of the starting gate, this new edition feels much, much sportier than its predecessor. It has a steel case, as opposed to the rose gold of the 2022 edition, which looks great with the high polish finish across the smooth bezel and lugs. Also, the cold tone of the steel pairs with the electric blue of the dial better than gold would. There are two sizes available, 42mm and 36mm.

Frederique Constant Classics Runabout

The dial itself is gorgeous. Bright, vibrant blue with contrasting finishes across the peripheral minute scale, inner hour scale and central Clous de Paris guilloché disk. Also, for the first time, the lume across the hands, hour markers and Arabic numerals is presented in teal to match the colour of the dial, which looks cool. These are not the traditional colours of a dress watch but it still works well.

Frederique Constant Classics Runabout caseback

It feels fresh and summer ready. Which is entirely the point, as it’s a watch made in collaboration with the Riva Historical Society, a group dedicated to preserving the history and legacy of Italian runabout boats. Beneath the surface, the 2024 edition of the Frederique Constant Classics Runabout Automatic in blue houses the FC-303. It’s a movement used in all previous Runabout watches and features a 38-hour power reserve. You can view it through the exhibition caseback.

Frederique Constant Classics Runabout 42mm

In terms of price and availability, the two sizes are each limited to 1,888 pieces at a price of £1,495 for the 36mm and £1,595 for the 42mm. That seems like a reasonable price for a watch that feels like a hyper accessible version of a Patek Philippe Calatrava.

Price and Specs:

Model: Frederique Constant Classics Runabout
Ref: FC-303RMLN3B6 (36mm), FC-303RMLN5B6 (42mm)
Case: 36mm/42mm diameter x 9.85mm/11.5mm thickness, stainless steel
Dial: Electric blue sunray, clous de paris guilloché
Water resistance: 50m (5 bar)
Movement: Frederique Constant calibre FC-303 (based on Sellita SW200), automatic, 26 jewels
Frequency: 28,800 vph (4 Hz)
Power reserve: 38h
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, date
Strap: Calf leather with crocodile pattern, stainless steel pin buckle
Price: £1,495 (36mm), £1,595 (42mm), limited to 1,888 pieces each

More details at Frederique Constant.

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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.