Early 1980s, Japan. Kikuo Ibe continues to smash watches and his colleagues and superiors are quietly starting to worry. Ibe refuses to stop and in 1983 his perseverance is rewarded and his colleagues and superiors are reassured, when the shock-resistant G-Shock hits the market. The vulnerable watch has been rendered invincible by means of triple protection for the components, the movement and the case, becoming first an American and then a global success.
A household name even, which, because of its unique, striking looks and practical characteristics is adored by everyone, from geeks to nerds, from trendsetters to trend followers, from rappers to rockers and from film stars to everyday heroes. The sizeable watch has evolved explosively over the years. A modern G-Shock has an analogue time display for a timeless look and a series of sensors for various functions. Solar energy is used as a power source, radio-controlled technology is used and the watches are made of continuously improved and new materials for greater durability (read: less plastic, more metal).
Because the watch was created from ingenious madness the development of the G-Shock has never been conventional or restrictive. The absolute high point in the G-Shock collection is the MRG-G1000RT that was presented during BaselWorld. A considerable delegation of Casio representatives presented the model with its case made of a crystallised titanium alloy that refers to the traditional Katana Samurai swords. Only 100 copies will be made of this special model. In the BaselWorld booth designer Kazuma Kobayashi – a young designer who is following in the footsteps of the legendary Ibe – explains that he is inspired by cars and planes, but also tanks.
A look at the new MRG confirms his story, which is told in ruggedly shaped titanium and angular details. As well as ruggedness there is also room for sophistication, because a DLC coating with a subtle ‘Japanese blue’ glow is applied and gold is used in the movement to ensure the best possible conductive characteristics. With respect to functions the advanced movement system that receives both GPS and radio signals for its time calibration is worth mentioning, as is the Dual Dial World Time that simultaneously shows the time intwo different cities. This limited and extremely luxurious G-Shock high point (for now, anyway) costs 5,500 euro.