MICRO MONDAYS: The Zelos Mako V3 Ti delivers a titanium diver for under $500Thor Svaboe
At Time-Tide, we have a history of covering the new releases of Elshan Tang, the owner and designer behind Zelos Watches in Singapore, and he seldom disappoints. I wouldn’t be exaggerating by proclaiming his prolific output to be a milestone that many a budding microbrand owner aims for and it’ll take more than a mere pandemic to slow down the progress of this brand. This new version of the tough Mako is typical of Zelos, with not two or three versions, but a mind-boggling nine iterations of the Zelos Mako V3 Ti. With such a prolific drop, you wonder how he does it, while enjoying how much dial colours and small details can change the perception of a functional diver’s watch.
The new Mako V3 300m Ti runs the gamut from the cool modernist approach of the White Storm, through vintage gilt and green. For a flash of colour, there’s a dark candy red, through to the organic glitter of a MOP dial, and the searingly blue fume of a teal version – trust me, there will be one for you.
The new range tops out the tiers in the beauty of a meteor dial, and the radical approach of a limited edition (and the only steel version) Ti-Damascus dial with its tiger-shark like arresting metallurgy, bringing the tool aesthetic to a dazzling new level.
Starting from less than $450 the Mako range is nothing but awesome in the value stakes, and I have no doubt that Zelos collectors and new fans will scoop up this production batch rather quickly. So, what makes the Mako stand out in a rather crowded microbrand diver’s watch hall of fame?
The experience of many years in the game shows in each of the sharp side bevels on the titanium case, and while vintage inspiration is there in the compact 40mm case with the just-so 46mm lug to lug, the language is pure Zelos, a characteristic not all microbrands can boast, many following the fickle world of watch trends as some are wont to do.
Titanium will bring an unexpected lightness to the Mako wrist game, with a hardened surface to 1200 Vickers for superb scratch resistance. This brings the Mako from retro to future-proof, and is something we would not at all expect from the sub-$500 price bracket, especially when there is a full Oyster-style titanium bracelet included, and a 300m depth rating. Still, Elshan Tang has managed to keep the thickness down to a dress-like 11.5mm, a proper magic trick for a 300m tool with a 2.5mm thick sapphire box crystal.
The Mako dial is well known for the fans of the range, the only problem is actually deciding, as the choice this time is rather wide. Whether you love the colour du jour of a dark green with beige lume, the flash of degrade blue, or go for the pure modernist tool feeling in the monochrome “frost”, you face a bewildering luxury of choice.
With the trusty Miyota 9015 automatic movement under the case back, running and accuracy is ensured, adding to the list of well-thought out small details that indeed are greater than the sum of what is a list of impressive parts. Small steps to ensure comfort, like the Seiko-ish signed lumed crown at 4 o’clock, simply THE best place on a diver’s watch (or any sports watch for that matter). The dials are detailed and colourful, and they come into the ring punching hard in any bout, whether up against Swiss competition or microbrands. Once again Zelos makes its mark with an integrity and style of its own, applied details with C3X1 and BGW9 lume. The conclusion is that this package will make you question production costs of many a big brand, and makes it an intriguing proposition, and perhaps the best 40mm titanium diver’s watch on a bracelet available for less than $500, period.
The Zelos Mako V3 Ti, price and availability:
The Zelos Mako V3 Ti is available now from $449USD on a titanium bracelet.
For more details, visit Zelos Watches right here.
Made in partnership with Zelos Watches. However, the opinions expressed in this article are our own in accordance with our Editorial Policy.