The Norqain offers a proprietary NORTEQ case with rubber bumpers, all of which seem to offer a similar vibe to the Formex, with its carbon case and suspension system. The Norqain gets a slightly more prestigious Kenissi movement, which has a higher power reserve, but overall, in practice shouldn’t differ wildly from the Selitta in the Formex (other than bragging rights?). If anything, it might even be easier to service. The Norqain weighs 84 grams and is sized a bit larger all around (see our full review of that watch right here), and features a more complex case construction but the benefits of which aren’t quite clear beyond the same shock absorption that the Formex has. The Formex looks like the clear winner here, all things considered, but that’s not to take anything away from the Wild One, I’d just say that watch feels like it needs a little more time in the oven, especially next to the Essence Leggera.
Next, on the other end of the spectrum is the C63 Colchester from Christopher Ward. It’s ultra lightweight with an injected carbon case, gets a trick hidden crown, and has the same chronometer spec Sellita movement inside. There’s no awesome clasp here, and the dimensions are a tad bigger all around, but the price is just $1,325 on a nylon strap. This watch feels right in line with the Formex, in that it’s a few features light ( no case suspension or quick adjust clasp), but overall a similar concept at a slightly lower price. This is a great option that didn’t get quite the attention it deserved upon release if you ask me.
So how do we make sense of the Formex Essence Leggera? In my mind, this is like a concept car with loads of amazing ideas not seen anywhere else. But it’s a concept car, so the build quality maybe isn’t quite up to snuff. That doesn’t change the fact that there’s some awesome ideas at work, and you can actually own it and wear it. And it’s just $1,800 bucks. There is so much to be excited about with this watch on a conceptual level that it’s easy to look past the weak points and enjoy everything that this watch is. And what this watch is is seriously impressive.
The Essence Leggera is a ton of watch for the money, and while it’s not without fault, its concepts come together incredibly well as usable, practical, and most importantly, fun. Formex.