Zenith's El Primero is definitely one of the most renowned chronograph movement ever produced. It beats at the exceptional frequency of 10 vibrations per second (36,000 vibrations per hour) and, despite of the fact that it was first introduced in 1969, it is still the world’s most precise series-made chronograph calibre thanks to continuous evolution and fine-tuning.
With the new El Primero Lightweight, Zenith is now introducing a new version of its El Primero movement which reduces its weight to just 15.45 grams (compared with 21.10 g for a similar classic movement).
To achieve this goal, Zenith machined the main elements - the main plate and five bridges (barrel bridge, balance bridge, pallet bridge, pallet-wheel bridge and chronograph bridge) - in titanium. The Manufacture has also maintained the silicon double chronograph wheel. Instead, the lever and the escape-wheel are made of silicon, a material that is light, antimagnetic and harder than steel for the highest efficiency.
The movement is housed in a 45 mm black carbon case whose sportiness in accentuated by the “chequered” effect typical of the world of races. The inner structure of the case is made of ceramised aluminium. The two chronograph push pieces are in titanium. The openworked lugs contributes to the incredible lightness of this watch.
The openworked dial of the El Primero Lightweight enhances the overall lightness while providing a view of the partial of the movement which is also visible through the sapphire crystal transparent caseback.
The date disc has been lightened and reworked with pierced numerals standing out on a small red disc at 6 o’clock. Even the hands have been hollowed as much as possible and then highlighted by a luminescent coating.
The light grey, blue and anthracite colours used for the chronograph sub-dials are typical of the El Primero Striking 10th product line. The red sweep seconds hand with its small Zenith star accurately measures feats to the nearest tenth of a second.
Issued in a 100-piece limited edition, the El Primero Lightweight is completed by a black rubber Nomex synthetic fibre strap equipped with a triple folding clasp providing optimal security and comfort.