Independent Swiss watchmaker CODE41 is a relatively new name in the industry. It was founded in 2016 by watch designer Claudio D’Amore, a Lausanne-based industrial designer who worked for years as an independent designer for brands including Montblanc and TAG Heuer. To carve itself a niche in the oversaturated industry, CODE41 decided to stand out by leveraging two important concepts: total transparency and creating timepieces by involving buyers in every stage of the horological process. The company offers complete transparency of production costs, sales margins, material gathering, assembly, craftsmanship, materials used, and more. This not only adds more customer trust in the brand but the creates a foundation for a lifelong relationship.
A little less than three years ago, the Swiss manufacturer expanded its line-up by adding its first chronograph called the NB24. Created in close collaboration with the brand’s passionate community of collectors, the NB24 was an instant hit with 1,380 pieces sold in just a matter of few weeks. Thanks to its overwhelming success, CODE41 has continued to expand the NB24 collection by adding newer variations, finetuned according to the valuable feedback from the community. For 2023, the Swiss manufacturer has revealed the third iteration of the ultra-modern chronograph which has been launched with a new dial color and case option. Without a doubt, the latest version of the NB24 has all the right ingredients to become a super hit.
Before we talk about the third edition of the NB24 timepiece, it’s important to quickly go through its history and how it got its name. Representing CODE41’s biggest success to date, the original Creator Edition was launched back in 2020, defying all the impediments caused by the pandemic. Powered by a cutting-edge chronograph movement, the timepiece featured the brand’s NativeDNA case characterized by its classical round shape, chambered construction, and distinctive lugs. Destined to be a popular model, Code41 decided to dedicate the chronograph to its brand ambassador Nigel Bailly – a paraplegic racing driver who fulfilled his lifelong dream in 2021 to compete in the grueling 24 Hours of Le Mans. The “NB” comes from the initials of the racer, while the number 24 represents the iconic endurance race.
For the third iteration of the NB24, CODE41 went back to its community of patrons and watch enthusiasts for feedback. The demands were quite clear and unanimous; the fans of NB24 wanted to see the timepiece introduced in a new color option and with the Stratom case from the T360 Tourbillon line. And the independent Swiss watchmaker did not disappoint. While the existing NativeDNA case has been retained for the newest edition of the chronograph, CODE41 has expanded the line-up with a new version that features the Stratom in Grade 5 titanium and it looks fantastic. On one hand, the NativeDNA version represents a refined esthetic that offers classic elegance, the new Stratom variant boasts a more timeless urban design for those looking for a sporty timepiece.
The Stratom case proudly displays its sports line along with its four visible screws and its highly-technical multi-layered design. It’s surprising how seamlessly the Stratom case was able to blend with the NB24 package to form a truly exciting timepiece. The case measures 42.7mm in diameter and 14.5mm in thickness. Since it’s crafted out of Grade 5 titanium, the case is 43% lighter than comparable models made out of steel. Both variants feature classic pushers at 2 and 4 o’clock along with a turbine-like crown at 3 o’clock. Furthermore, the NB24 (both versions) also gets a display caseback made of sapphire crystal which offers a view of the movement. Another distinctive update made to the third edition is the addition of orange color. The new watches have orange dial rings and sub-dials, making them look sportier than before.
Housed inside the case is the NB24’s automatic chronograph movement, which is based on the time-tested Valjoux 7750 movement. CODE41 partnered with Swiss manufacturing partner Concepto to redesign the movement and transform it according to its own needs, which includes moving the counters, redesigning the bridges, and adding a dial-side peripheral rotor – a horological rarity. In fact, a third of the movement’s cost involved adding the dial-side peripheral rotor. All components of the NB24 movement are created in-house by Concepto. The cam-driven manufacture chronograph offers a power reserve of 48 hours. Functions include central hours, minutes and chronograph seconds, 30-minute counter, small seconds, and date. The Stratom model is limited to 200 pieces. It is on pre-order till 18 October 2023 and is priced at $7200 and available at the Code41 website.