It was way back in 1969 that the first-ever gold Omega Speedmaster rolled off the production line, made for one wrist in particular – that of Richard Nixon. The caseback was engraved to read: RICHARD M. NIXON – PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES – “to mark man’s conquest of space with time, through time, on time”, and was to be a marker of the success that NASA had enjoyed throughout the 1960s. Unsurprisingly, public officials can’t accept gold watches from private companies, and the watch has sat in the Omega Museum ever since, offering a pristine reference for all of the gold Omega Speedmasters that have followed, including the latest Sedna gold Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch Professional Co-Axial Master Chronometer Chronograph 42mm.
There have only been a relative handful of gold Speedies produced over the years, including the yellow gold Apollo XI from 1980, the white gold Apollo XI 25th edition released in 1994 and more recently the Moonshine gold Apollo 11 50th Anniversary Limited Edition from 2019. This makes any gold Speedmaster a pretty exciting release, but what makes the 2021 precious metal release particularly enticing is that it is not a limited edition watch (for the first time since the ref. 3195.50 back in 2012). It will only be sold it Omega boutiques but, theoretically, should be available for anyone to order should their heart desire it. While this latest reference shares some clear lineage with the Apollo 11 50th Anniversary Limited Edition, it features a number of changes that might just get your heart racing.
The 42mm Sedna gold case is attractively lustrous, featuring razor-sharp case lines that highlight the blend of brushed and polished finishes that have been used. Sedna gold itself is Omega’s proprietary rose-gold alloy that has been created with a hue that is less prone to change, thanks to its blend of copper, gold and palladium. The reddish warmth that it emanates flies a little more under the radar than its Moonshine gold sibling from two years ago, which might make it easier to put on your wrist more regularly depending on your proclivity to wear visibly expensive watches.
With a lug to lug measurement of 47.3mm and a thickness of 13.18mm, this slightly tweaked case is also likely to wear ever so smaller than the traditional Speedmaster case you might be used to. Despite these tweaks, you still get the classic lyre lugs and protected chronograph pushers and crown, which are a core part of the case DNA. The exhibition caseback serves up a stunning view of the caliber 3861 that is newly released across the collection, and screws down to guarantee 50m of water resistance.
Unlike the Apollo 11 50th Anniversary Limited Edition from 2019 that featured a burgundy ceramic bezel, this latest release offers a nod to the Speedmasters of the past with a black aluminium bezel and the all important dot over 90.
The black dial offers several more nods to the past, with a vintage-inspired step down to the minute track, as well as the three subdials. Unlike both the sapphire and hesalite stainless-steel references whose black dials feature a granular matte finishing, the black dial of the Sedna gold reference has a slight sunburst brush to it, catching the light nicely.
Across the rest of the dial, the painted markings and hands are a matching gold tone with the case, and the Omega logo has been applied at 12 o’clock.
The caliber 3861 might have been added to the entire collection in 2021, but it isn’t the first time we’ve seen it. In fact, it was in the Moonshine gold Apollo 11 50th Anniversary Limited Edition where it first appeared, plated in Moonshine-gold. We then saw it in the stainless steel Apollo 11 50th Anniversary Limited Edition (though you couldn’t see it for Neil Armstrong’s famous footprint) and then most recently in the ‘Silver Snoopy Award’ 50th Anniversary from last year.
This latest in-house Omega caliber 3681 is a big step up from the original caliber 1861 that has powered the Moonwatch for decades, as it is now a certified Master Chronometer approved by METAS, meaning it has passed a laundry list of rigorous tests to ensure accuracy and reliability. The power reserve has improved slightly to 50 hours (from 48 hours with the caliber 1861), is resistant to magnetic fields up to 15,000 gauss and now features the George Daniels designed co-axial escapement.
The bracelet is another exciting update to the entire Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch family, but is particularly welcome on the Sedna gold reference. Thanks to the solid gold case and bracelet it weighs 218 grams, compared to the steel version weighing about 138 grams, which makes the ergonomics of the bracelet critical to the watch-wearing comfort on the wrist.
Thanks to smaller links and the bracelet swiftly tapering from 20mm at the lugs to 15mm at the clasp, it wears remarkably comfortably for such a heavy watch. The clasp also features the Omega logo, and a secure twin-button clasp to open.
There’s no doubt about it. The Sedna gold Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch Professional Co-Axial Master Chronometer Chronograph 42mm is a seriously cool watch. This isn’t likely to be your first Speedy, but if you’ve spend some time with a Speedmaster on your wrist over the years you’ll appreciate how special this release is.
Without losing any of the original Moonwatch DNA, this reference in Sedna gold offers a warmly toned and luxurious expression of the watch that was chosen to go to space. After all, if it was good enough for the President of the United States, what else do you want?
Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch Professional Co-Axial Master Chronometer Chronograph 42mm in Sedna gold pricing and availability:
The Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch Professional Co-Axial Master Chronometer Chronograph 42mm in Sedna gold is $53,150 Australian dollars, and is only available from Omega boutiques. For more details, visit Omega right here.
Made in partnership with Omega. However, the opinions expressed in this article are our own in accordance with our Editorial Policy.