The Defy saga began in 2017 with the 100th of a second chronograph named Defy El Primero 21. The same year, Zenith unveiled Defy Lab, an ‘archetype’ regulated by a revolutionary oscillator developed by the Manufacture and issued in a 10-piece limited edition. Today, the ‘specimen’ is moving beyond laboratory stage and becoming the Defy Inventor, produced in a run of several hundred units and equipped with its own patented regulating organ. Like its predecessor, Defy Inventor offers technical performance and a modern aesthetic.
Beating at the extremely high frequency of 18Hz (compared to the usual 4Hz usually) and endowed with a comfortable two-day autonomy, Defy Inventor owes its exceptional properties to a disruptive technology: the single-piece Zenith Oscillator developed and patented by the Maison that has replaced the sprung balance used in mechanical watchmaking for three and a half centuries. This major innovation for the industry offers a number of benefits. Firstly, increased reliability, given that this unique ultra-thin element (0.5mm) replaces the thirty or so components of a standard regulating organ and thus eliminates contact, friction, wear and deformation; and secondly, stability, since it is made of monocrystalline silicon and therefore insensitive to temperature variations and magnetic fields. In addition, its escape-wheel is made of flexible blades, a first in the watch industry. These exceptional qualities are triple certified: for magnetic insensitivity (ISO-764), thermal insensitivity (ISO-3159) and chronometric precision (TIMELAB – Foundation of the Geneva Laboratory of Horology and Micro-engineering).
An innovative ‘engine’ has been teamed with an avant-garde exterior. Defy Inventor is as architectural as it is organic. Its powerful stature is carved out from ultra-light materials: brushed titanium for the 44mm diameter case, Aeronith for the textured bezel. This lightest aluminium composite in the world was developed using an exclusive high-tech process. Three times lighter than titanium, made of open-pore aluminium foam, stiffened with a polymer, Aeronith is easily forgotten when worn, while asserting a unique modern style. The equally airy openworked dial forms a stylised propeller, of which the five ‘blades/branches’ evoke the Zenith star.