The official motto under Canada’s coat of arms reads A Mari usque ad Mare, which translates from the Latin as “From Sea to Sea.” To commemorate this heritage, The Whitby Watch Company has launched a new series of timepieces. The Ad Mare Collection is a slate of three divers–one to represent each of the seas along Canada’s border: the Arctic, Pacific and Atlantic.
While I have a soft spot for the Whitby Avro Pilot Watch, the Ad Mare Diver might just be my new favourite from the brand. The Ad Mare builds on the strengths of what Whitby started with the release of their Intrepid X Chrono-Diver. While many watchmakers have been trending downward in case size, Whitby have opted to invest in the traditional beefy sports watch–aligning themselves with brands like Breitling, instead. As with the Intrepid X, the Ad Mare line employs a 44mm 316L Stainless Steel case that is 50mm lug to lug. The watch is also 14mm thick. Despite these dimensions, however, the watch does not wear to the full extent of its measurements.
This is due, in part, to the case construction, but the Ad Mare bezel and bracelet also play a role. The Ad Mare case is reminiscent of the Seiko Samurai (itself a 44mm watch) in its overall shape. It has an angular quality that is very contemporary and the bezel which sits upon it appears framed by its boxlike silhouette. The flattened lugs then drop sharply, essentially following the curvature of your wrist and belying their true length. In addition, the male endlinks on the bracelet prolong the downward slope, so that the lugs are not artificially extended, either.
For its part, the thick ceramic bezel insert does much to visually shrink the dial, as well–particularly on the Arctic and Pacific references where the ceramic is matte black. The subdued quality of the dark ceramic is another element pulled from last year’s Intrepid X, and is a highlight of this design. By contrast, the Atlantic’s insert is a glossy blue with a stark white countdown scale to match the dial. I really like the way the outer edge of the bezel has been interspersed in segments of coin-edge teething.
Both the case and the bracelet are entirely brushed. The screw down crown is nicely machined and a good size. It is also partially shielded by the case, but easily accessible. The watch promises 200m of water resistance.
Other than colour, the Ad Mare dials are similar in all three references. Each has an angled rehaut which slopes into the sector plane. Printed onto this ring is a sixty minute track with a combination of bar markers and numerals on the fives. The rehauts in both the Arctic and Pacific match the rest of the dial, whereas the Atlantic juxtaposes a paler tone of blue. In the outer portion of the dial, there are applied chevron markers rimmed in polished steel–a motif that is repeated in the partially skeletonized sword handset. The interior of each dial is textured in a nice, tight wave pattern. To reflect the polished elements, the brand logo has been rendered in steel and applied below the twelve position. There is also a date window at 3 o’clock. In each reference, the wheel is colour-matched. The hands, the markers, and the bezel pip have all been treated with C3 Super-LumiNova and the watch is capped in a sapphire crystal that is 2.5mm thick.
Whitby have gone with a Swiss movement again in the Ad Mare. This time it is the Sellita SW200-1. It is a 4Hz movement with a 38-hour power reserve. You won’t have a chance to see it though. The screw down case back of the Ad Mare is solid and decorated in a custom embossing. The image uses a stylized combination of a polar bear, a puffin, and an orca.
Each Ad Mare comes standard on a stainless steel bracelet. The clasp is milled with a clam shell fold-over and push-button release. It is signed with the an engraving of the brand logo. With a 22mm lug width, the watch will certainly be a strap monster, and look great on rubber or a NATO.
|Case||316L Stainless Steel|
50.8mm Lug to Lug
22mm Lug Width
120-Click Unidirectional Ceramic Bezel
Screw-down Case Back & Crown
200m Water Resistance
|Dial & Crystal||Flat Sapphire|
Textured Sector Dial
Date @ 3
38-Hour Power Reserve
|Strap||Stainless Steel Bracelet /w|
Whitby Ad Mare Diver
As they had with the Intrepid X, Whitby have elected to assemble the Ad Mare in Canada. Expert watchmakers near the brand’s headquarters inspect and adjust each watch before it is shipped out. The Ad Mare is also pressure tested to 30ATM just to be sure. The watches will also be accompanied to their final destinations by a Nanuk 903 Waterproof Utility Case. The case is made in Canada and comes with a customized foam insert especially cut to fit the Ad Mare. Given the retail cost of the watch, the inclusion of the Nanuk is quite a boon.
Those with smaller wrists might find the Ad Mare diver is a little large. I would also like to see a diver’s extension added to the bracelet in order to make it more functional as a tool watch.
The Whitby Ad Mare Divers have the look and feel of the quintessential sports watch. The size and weight instill confidence on wrist. For a watch priced like a mid-range Seiko, you get a lot for your money. The finishing in the dial is top notch. The Swiss Sellita movement is a workhorse. But for me, it’s all about the bezel. I really like the way the edge has been bevelled in a circular brushing and then variegated along the perimeter. And the ceramic insert, in particular, works so well in the overall design. For me, the Arctic, with its contrast of matte black and creamy white, truly resonates. Of course, like all things Whitby, these divers tell a story. And that’s never bad thing.
The Ad Mare is currently available for an introductory price of $577USD. For more information, please visit the brand website.
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