Unimatic Enlists Italian Army For Military-Spec Field Watch Collection
If you want dependable everyday carry gear you can trust, it’s sometimes best to go straight to the source — like working with the Italian military on a rugged mil-spec watch, as UNIMATIC is doing with its latest collection.
The relatively young made-in-Italy, design-obsessed horology company (launched in 2015 by two Italian technical design classmates) has made a splash with hard-wearing watches in a curated offering, including the U1 Classic diving watch. That silhouette is among the brand’s models to get an update approved by Esercito Italiano — the Italian Army.
The collection isn’t anything like the best luxury watches on the market, and it’s never a bad thing to have a truly useful field watch close at hand.
The UNIMATIC U1-PA pays tribute to Italian paratroopers, placing a paratroopers’ badge at the 6-o’clock marking while also incorporating a unique compass bezel, a first for the brand. It’s but one of a few carefully selected updates fit for the field from UNIMATIC.
The utility of the U1-PA is bolstered even further with SuperLuminova markings for maximum visibility, while a Seiko movement ensures sharp timekeeping on the fly. And in keeping with the covert stealth of paratroopers, it’s fitted on a stylish yet useful camo strap.
The NATO strap, a useful design first favored by British troops, makes it easy to slip the strap out and swap in another option of your own, too. Might we suggest a minimal black nylon strap? In effect, you’re getting two watches at one agreeable price (pricing starts at $730 for the U1-PA).
The new UNIMATIC offering also includes an ultra-sleek all-black edition of the U1-PA, and both adventure-minded timepieces are built to resist depths up to 300 meters — each with a 41-hour power reserve to keep things running smoothly, to boot.
While it’s tough to single out any one timepiece from UNIMATIC to begin with, especially when the brand uses precise movements and Italian-made construction, the U4-TA might be our personal favorite.
Inspired by the next-level skill of the Mountain Troops of the Italian Army Alpini (known as the Comando Truppe Alpine), the shock-proof watch features a two-piece strap in an army green that’s perfectly suited for off-grid exploration and a more casual jet-set lifestyle.
Limited to just 200 pieces and featuring a nicely sized 40mm case diameter and a 41-hour power reserve, the go-anywhere, highly legible and absurdly tough watch is a fitting tribute to the oldest active mountain infantry in the world.
Better still, it’s available for slightly more than $600, an extremely fair price for a watch that’s got the proper bells and whistles — and a real-world nod of approval from those best suited to use it. If we were you, we’d do our best to get at least one of these limited-edition UNIMATIC watches while there’s still time.