As an author/writer, I am always looking for new and exciting projects to sink my teeth into. Even when I devise an interesting concept it might not always appeal to my publisher. Sometime they might like the subject a lot but feel it will not resonate with their target market. Unfortunately, that is the reality of life and financial viability is sometimes integral to the success of a project. The same parallel can be made in the highly competitive world of horology. I have spoken with many brands who have created extraordinary timepieces but the figures simply do not stack up. Fortunately, Switzerland based company Gorilla Watches has managed to find that even balance.
A few years ago watch design was completely autonomous to different industries like architecture, automotive etc. However, to survive watchmakers had to evolve and become more adventurous in their overall philosophy. If you are a small micro brand, there are not the resources to create bespoke movements. For that reason, there are a certain size and functionality restrictions that need to be adhered to especially if you want to create a mechanical timepiece. One way that watch companies have been more experimental over the last decade is in their choice of materials. In my opinion, this has been the most progressive advancement in the world of horology.
For quite a while I have chronicled the gradual success of Gorilla Watches. The company is owned by two innovative designers called Octavio Garcia and Lukas Gopp. Both of these dynamic personalities are inspired by automotive technology and have worked for companies like Audemars Piguet, IWC Schaffhausen, Ralph Lauren etc. This essential industry experience was pivot when establishing their own exciting microbrand.
Less than a decade ago it would have been almost impossible to purchase timepieces constructed from carbon fiber. At this stage, only exclusive labels like Audemars Piguet and Hublot were experimenting with this material. However, Gorilla Watches have delivered to market a phenomenal looking carbon, ceramic and aluminum piece for only $880. I got my hands on the Acid Green model, which looks and feels amazing. The three-dimensional partially skeletonized back dial is a revelation and is inspired by the clean lines of performance cars. Other fine details include bold contrasting white numerals, sapphire crystal lens and luminous hands.
Beneath the industrial façade lies a Japanese Miyota 8215, Self-winding movement. This caliber comprises 21-jewels and oscillates at a frequency of 21,600 vibrations per hour. Although on this particular model the mechanism isn’t visibly showcased there is a beautifully engraved case back with gorilla illustration. Functionally the Acid Green features, hours, minutes and seconds. The timepiece also has a power reserve of 40-hours and is water resistant to a depth of 100 meters.
The Acid Green model I tested was equipped with a high-grade black rubber strap and titanium pin buckle. For more information about Gorilla Watches follow this link