The Nivada Grenchen F77 Titanium Meteorite blends ’70s swagger with modernity The Nivada Grenchen F77 Titanium Meteorite blends ’70s swagger with modernity

The Nivada Grenchen F77 Titanium Meteorite blends ’70s swagger with modernity

Buffy Acacia

Up until recently, the sports watches from Nivada Grenchen were of the era when you still had to wear a blazer, but it was maybe a little bit stripy or colourful. Heading into the world of ‘70s inspiration, the styles are more synonymous with Ralph Lauren Polo shirts, short shorts, and of course the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak. The F77 was Nivada Grenchen’s take on the octagonal steel sports watch which has become a genre in its own, and this reissue reference welcomes a thoroughly modern dial to its titanium case.

The case

Nivada Grenchen F77 Titanium Meteroite Case 1

So many brands have released watches inspired by the Royal Oak, and few try to hide the massive presence of its inspiration. They each need something which gives them a unique character, separating them from being clones. With the Nivada Grenchen F77 Titanium, there are some pretty glaring differences in the case that alter its style significantly. The octagonal bezel commands the most attention, and it retains a lot more roundness than most of its kind. The chamfered edge isn’t so pronounced, and the screws at each of its points are quite meagre. Overall, it’s a softer look than the in-your-face style we’re used to. The domed sapphire crystal also gives it a distinct flavour, more akin to a space helmet than a ship’s porthole.

Nivada Grenchen F77 Titanium Meteroite Case 2

In addition to the softened edges of the case design, the brushed finish itself is rather gentle. It’s entirely vertical, keeping the grain consistent, and the shallowness of the brushing gives the titanium more of a sporty haze than an all-out tool watch finish. That grade 5 titanium also leads to a very lightweight watch, weighing just 86 grams on the bracelet. Contributing to the air of sophistication, Nivada Grenchen has opted for a 37mm diameter which accurately echoes the sizing of the ‘70s. It feels somewhat petite, but never at a detriment to its sportiness. At 12.6mm thick and 45mm lug-to-lug, comfort is definitely attainable for wrists of all sizes.

The dial

Nivada Grenchen F77 Titanium Meteroite Dial 1

While the case of the F77 Titanium may be a relatively faithful reissue, the dial has been brought into the 21st century with a modest meteorite dial. This is the thing which really sets this watch apart, and yet it somehow doesn’t look as intense or over-the-top masculine as you may expect from a meteorite dial. The crystalline texture is inviting, and backed up by gleaming applied indices with classic ‘70s blockiness. The charcoal and greyscale colouring is super clean, and no element seems crowded, misplaced, or unbalanced.

Nivada Grenchen F77 Titanium Meteroite Dial 2

The Nivada Grenchen brand has had somewhat of a rocky history, and as a result, the logo has varied greatly throughout the eras. In the ‘70s, the shield symbol and the word ‘Nivada’ was a pretty common arrangement for watches such as the original F77 and the Chronomaster, and so it’s been rendered here in a charming applied manner. On the lower half of the dial, the stylised F77 logo and the Automatic text match the retro-futuristic swagger of the rest of the watch.

The strap

Nivada Grenchen F77 Titanium Meteroite Bracelet

Rather than going down the integrated bracelet route, which seemingly everyone is doing now, the Nivada Grenchen F77 Titanium actually has more or less a traditional lug setup. Even the three-link, fully brushed arrangement of the bracelet is surprisingly standard. Where things get a little strange is with the end link, but it’s entirely accurate to the original ‘70s model. The end link travels into a little shroud, which then clips into the gap between the lugs with spring bars. It affords a little bit more flexibility, although the effective lug-to-lug width does extend out to 50.5mm when accounting for them. The solid clasp with security pushers is definitely more chunky and reliable than anything from the ‘70s however, and fans of micro-adjustment will be pleased with the seven holes across 19mm.

The movement

Nivada Grenchen F77 Titanium Meteroite Movement

Hidden behind a solid caseback bearing an engraving of the Nivada shield, the F77 Titanium is powered by a Soprod P024 movement. Based on the omnipresent ETA 2824-2 architecture, this calibre is a departure from the ETA-made ones and the Sellita SW200-1 clones. It’s generally considered a higher-end version, but the Soprod P024 hasn’t quite become widespread enough for there to be a proper consensus yet. Reports from owners seem to be positive, with a stated accuracy tolerance of +/-12 seconds per day, and it retains the standard specifications of a 38-hour power reserve with a 4Hz beat rate.

The verdict

The Nivada Grenchen F77 Titanium exists in quite a strange quantum realm, where it’s a relatively accurate reissue of an homage to the Royal Oak from the late ‘70s. Then, you’re adding the meteorite and titanium elements which feel totally contemporary. Because of that, it doesn’t really slot in to any sort of collecting niche, and really its buyers will be those who see it and fall in love with it. Considering the depth of design and the production quality, the US$1,690 price tag feels very fair, and there really aren’t any overwhelming negatives which could detract from it as long as you like the looks.

Nivada Grenchen F77 Titanium Meteorite pricing & availability

The Nivada Grenchen F77 Titanium Meteorite is now available alongside the other F77 Stone Dials from the Time+Tide Shop. Price: US$1,500, A$2,990

Brand Nivada Grenchen
Model F77 Titanium Meteorite
Case Dimensions 37mm (D) x 12.6mm (T) x 45mm (LTL)
Case Material Grade 5 titanium
Water Resistance 100 metres
Crystal(s) Sapphire
Dial Grey meteorite
Bracelet Three-link grade 5 titanium bracelet, folding clasp
Movement Soprod P024, automatic
Power Reserve 38 hours
Functions Hours, minutes, seconds
Availability Now available from the Time+Tide Shop
Price US$1,500, A$2,990