A few months ago, we brought you the exciting news about the launch of the reissue of the Omega Speedmaster Mark II Co-Axial Chronograph. Today, we bring you the new Omega Speedmaster Mark II Co-Axial Chronograph Rio 2016 Limited Edition, which is the third of the new three Mark II models —other two reviewed here. The Speedmaster Mark II Co-Axial Chronograph Rio 2016 is a limited edition of 2,016 pieces that celebrates the XXXI Olympic Games to be celebrated in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil from August 5 thru the 21st in 2016. While this new watch is almost identical to the Mark II with matte black dial, Omega decided to add three different colored rings to the chronograph counters to symbolize the gold, silver and bronze medals awarded during the Olympic Games. Additionally, the watch features polished center links on its bracelet and a specially engraved case back.
The original Speedmaster Mark II was launched in 1969, as a timepiece with a streamlined case that was powered by the same space-tested, hand-wound calibre 861 found inside the Moonwatch. In 2014 Omega has reintroduced this classic and updated it to include an automatic movement with column wheel chronograph and a tachymetric scale that is visible in the most limited light thanks to its ultra bright superluminova– a first in the iconic Speedmaster family. The new Omega Speedmaster Mark II Co-Axial Chronograph Rio 2016 Limited Edition is fitted with one of the best matte finished dials we have seen lately. Fitted with a matte black dial just like the one on its counterpart ref. 318.104.22.168.01.001, the dial features a running seconds register at 9, a 30-minute chrono-register at 3 and a 12-hour chrono-register with small date aperture at 6 o’clock. The beautiful matte finish of the dial is enhanced by a perfectly flat scratch-resistant sapphire crystal with anti-reflective treatment on both sides that provides exceptional readability. Depending on lighting conditions, the black dial looks more like a charcoal grey due to the grain on its matte finished surface.
The barrel-shaped stainless steel case measuring 42.4 mm in width and 46.2 mm in length features the most beautiful satin-brushed finish with alternating polished chamfers. While this watch doesn't feature a screw-down winding crown, the new crown feels very solid and slightly bigger than the crown fitted on its predecessor. The watch features pump pushers and a date corrector located at 10 o’clock on the case band. As you will be able to appreciate the attention to detail and finish of the watch is exceptional. The only thing we would've liked on this watch would've been a screw-down crown; however, we understand that this feature might've clashed with the vintage DNA of the watch.
The watch is equipped with a nice solid satin-brushed finished stainless steel bracelet with polished center links —the only variation when compared to the bracelet on the other two Mark II models currently available— and an Omega signed clasp. This bracelet is not only thicker than the bracelet on the original Speedmaster Mark II but it is also fitted with the new Omega patented extendable fold over rack-and-pusher clasp with micro-adjustment. To micro-adjust the bracelet, one just needs to push a small button located inside the clasp and smoothly slide the link outward as necessary. This micro-adjustment provides up to 9.60 mm of extra length to the last link on the bracelet. Perhaps, the best micro-adjustment system we have seen in the market so far.
The beating heart powering this fascinating timepiece is the Omega Co-Axial calibre 3330, an automatic movement with column-wheel chronograph mechanism, co-axial escapement for greater precision, stability and durability of the movement and a free sprung-balance equipped with Si14 silicon balance spring. This watch is an Officially Certified Chronometer and it provides a power reserve of 52 hours when fully wound. To protect the movement, the watch is fitted with a solid case back that features the symbol of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games —instead of the traditional seahorse medallion engraving—, as well as the "Mark II", “Si14” and “Column Wheel” engravings. The watch is water resistant to a depth of a 100 meters.
On the wrist, the watch wears true to its size and with remarkable wrist presence. Once you put this watch on, prepare yourself to be taken back in time with one of the most iconic watches ever designed by Omega. To make it even more attractive, the watch is attractively priced and one that we definitely recommend getting.
Sticker Price $6,500 USD. For more info on Omega click here.