Dynasty: The King Seiko Is Making A Comeback

Dynasty: The King Seiko Is Making A Comeback

Seiko is resurrecting its royal collection with five new editions.

By Rhonda Riche

If we’re being totally honest with you, we are a little reluctant to share the news that Seiko is bringing back the King Seiko collection.

After all, the solid, sporty 1960s watch line is a bit of an inside secret for collectors, which means that if you’re lucky, you can find an example on the secondary market for a song.

But our mission is to spread the joy of watches far and wide, so ultimately, we are excited to see the King back on the throne.

Royal Tea

From the launch of Grand Seiko in 1960 to the development of pioneering automatic chronographs and quartz movements in 1969, the Sixties was the decade when Seiko earned its place in the prestige space.

The company used the technological advancements learned from creating Grand Seiko to create a more accessible, but still gracefully designed collection called King Seiko. On top of offering precise, high-frequency mechanics and precision, the King Seiko also offered a sharp, angular yet graceful design that spoke to an elegance way above its price point. But by the second half of the 1970s, King Seiko’s stars began to fade, and the line was discontinued in the early 1980s.

The brand’s fans never forgot, though. And in, 2020 Seiko introduced a 3,000-piece limited edition of the discontinued watch line. This reintroduction was successful enough that, for its first major release of 2022, the brand is making the King Seiko part of its permanent catalog.

Return of the Kings

The new King Seiko family comprises five new watches inspired by the 1965 King Seiko KSK. This timepiece was part of the second series of King Seikos and one that is most popular amongst collectors.

In particular, the 1965 King Seiko KSK was noted for its juxtaposition of a flat dial with faceted indices and broad, razor-edged hands. Other unforgettable features of the KSK were its bold, faceted lugs and mix of mirror and hairline finishing.

The new King Seikos – the SPB279, SPB281, SPB283, SPB285, and SPB287 – carry on the KSK’s tradition of supreme legibility married with premium details.

The Royal Family

Each model in the collection comes in a compact 37mm stainless steel case to preserve the legacy of the 1965 original. The profile of these pieces is just as faithful to the past with their tall box sapphire crystals and solid casebacks engraved with the original King Seiko shield emblem.

The rebirth of King Seiko is also about renewal. All presented on an integrated stainless steel bracelet with a tri-fold push button release clasp, the five models in the series each have a distinct dial design.

The SPB279 is closest to the classic KSK with its silver sunburst finish, but the SPB281 takes this traditional silver surface and advances it with a deeply grained vertical brushed pattern.

The SPB283 has a more casual sunburst black dial, while the SPB285 features a warm brown sunburst dial.

And finally, the SPB287 makes a statement with its rich red sunburst finished dial.

Seiko also equipped the new King Seiko collection with the more advanced calibre 6R31. This movement beats at 21,600 vibrations per hour with a power reserve of approximately 70 hours. It also provides 100 meters of water resistance and has a robust magnetic resistance of 4,800 A/m.

Pricing & Availability

The King Seiko collection is now available for pre-order and will be available at select Seiko boutiques and dealers in the US in April. All pieces will be priced at $1,700.

For more information, visit Seiko’s website.

(Images © Seiko Watches)

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