Ralf Tech WRX City Explorer C

By Florian Matrion - August 2, 2010
WRX City Explorer C Diaporama
Young brand revealed to the public in 2008 and launched by Frank Huyghe, Ralf Tech is a brand to be discovered. Let's review the WRX City Explorer C, a watch with virile sizes.
Exclusive! review of the WRX City Explorer C. Manufacturer data, photos, editor's opinion and watch retail price on thewatchobserver.co.uk
Editor's opinion
56/100
Users' rating
70/100

Ralf Tech is a new young brand revealed to the general public in 2008.
Its founder, Frank Huyghe, has resold his diving equipment company in order to thrust himself into the watch making adventure and create his own watch brand.
World record holder of depth of diving (-330 m) with Pascal Bernabé, Ralf Tech is a brand to be discovered.

 

A solid construction...

First claim from Ralf Tech : the systematic test of the watches in real conditions.
They go through hyperbaric box beam at the indicated depth in order to check their waterproofness.
A substantial precaution when a lot of brands content themselves with theoretical resistance.

With a casing equipped with double 47.5 mm diameter seals and a 5.9 mm thick sapphire, this Ralph Tech seems well carved to face several outings to the sea.

The global finishing is correct but could have been improved, in particular for the dial, a bit rough.

 

... combined to a strong personality

It is obvious that the Ralf Tech WRX is not a “shy” watch : it immediately stands out !
It is nice to notice that, even if evident inspirations from the competition are found (hands and cushion shape casing of Panerai type, “Méga Tapisserie” motif of the dial from Audemars Piguet, for the most obvious...), the WRX has a peculiar and endearing personality.

 

Ralf Tech WRX City Explorer C : its strong personality combined with a pleasant design produce an interesting alternative for someone who is looking for a different and endearing watch.

A diving watch... that reminds of the automobile world

Paradoxically, although the brand's discourse and its founder experience are really diving directed, this WRX rather reminds of the automobile world.

First with its name !
WRX City Explorer C, it sounds more like a trendy ATV than a diving tool, right?

But the comparison does not stop there : as the super powerful American “muscle cars” but at the end not really adapted to a sport driving, the WRX City Explorer C seems indestructible but will be more comfortable in the urban exploration than in the sub-marine one : the readability is average, nightly and daily.

As for the chrono, it is certainly more present for the look than to improve the performance : simply because it cannot be used under water and its doubtful graduation does not match the movement's frequency.

The hands stopping between the markers cannot allow an accurate measure of the time of cooking of the pastas, once back on dry land...

 

Conclusion

Let's be clear : despite its 300 m waterproofness, the Ralf Tech WRX City Explorer C is not a watch thought for diving.
Nevertheless, its strong personality combined with a pleasant design produce an interesting alternative for someone who is looking for a different and endearing watch.
Only the price seems a bit ambitious on this chrono version...
The 3-hand models offer the same looks for a more reasonable price.

 

The + :

  • strengthened design and strong personality
  • independent little brand
  • watch delivered with two straps

 

The – :

  • perfectible finishing
  • a little high price
  • to be reserved to strong wrists

 

Further information :

  • journalist's wrist = 17 cm
  • brand Internet website : Ralf Tech
Slideshow
11 pictures to see this watch in all its angles
Click on one photo to enlarge the watch gallery
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Manufacturer data

Brand Ralf Tech
Model name WRX City Explorer C
Reference number WRX CTE BAC
Case material Steel
Case diameter (without crown) 47,5 mm
Case diameter (crown included) 52 mm
Movement type Automatic
Calibre RTAC 001
Calibre base ETA 7750
Functions Second
Minute
Hour
Day
Date
Chronograph
Crystal Single-face crystal with anti-reflective coating
Power reserve ability 46h
Transparent back No
Lug width 26 mm
Length from lug to lug 56 mm
Case thickness 18 mm
Water resistant 300 m
Strap material Alligator
Clasp type Pin buckle
Clasp type Steel
Total weight 197 grammes
Retail price France at 2010/08/02 3,450.00 € calc

Editor's opinion 56/100

Confort (/15) 10
more Movement (/20) 7
Movement Optimisation / Garnishment (/5) 0
Ease of handling and adjustment (/5) 4
Movement control proceeded by the Manufacture / horlogical awards (/3) 0
Power reserve ability (/2) 1
Complications (/5) 2
more Finishing (/20) 11
Dial finishing (/6) 3
Case finishing (/6) 3
Quality of garnishment / caseback engraving quality (/2) 1
Crystal quality (/4) 3
Clasp finishing (inner and extern) (/2) 1
more Practicality (/20) 13
Diurnal legibility (/5) 3
Night legibility (/4) 2
Water resistant (/3) 2
Strap : ease of size adjustment + ease of substitution (/4) 3
Clasp : quality and safety (/4) 3
more Bonus (/10) 5
Limited edition (/3) 2
Watch delivered with several straps (/2) 1
Quality of the watch box (/1) 1
Portability with shirtsleeves buttoned (/2) 0
Goodies included (/1) 0
Understandability of the brochure (/1) 1
Value for money (/15) 10
When to wear it ?
While driving your amphibious 4x4 !

Users' rating 70/100

Confort (/15) 11.5
Movement (/20) 12.5
Finishing (/20) 13
Practicality (/20) 15
Bonus (/10) 7.5
Value for money (/15) 11.5
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