CITIZEN ECO-DRIVE WATCH REVIEW 2021 – IS IT WORTH IT?

Published on 6th March 2021

Ever bought an expensive watch that gradually went out of charge? What do you really do with it? We know! It goes inside one of the cupboards and never sees the light of the day! We often tell ourselves we’ll go out and get the batteries replaced. But in the end, whoever wants to make a trip just to get the batteries changed? What if I were to tell you that there is a brand of watches that potentially never have to have the batteries changed! Furthermore, they could possibly even outlive you. Intriguing, isn’t it? Read ahead to find out how this is possible! 

Citizen Eco-Drive Watches: Are they good watches?

Citizen is a renowned brand with a legacy of producing some of the most accurate watches in the world that are also affordable and mass-produced, without skimping a bit on quality. The Shokosha Watch Research Institute was originally founded in 1918, and it was taken over by Swiss and Japanese investors in 1930 to form the Citizen watch company. Since then, they have always been highly innovative in terms of creating new horological technology and have always been coming up with highly useful and practical innovations in their products for decades.

Their proprietary Eco-Drive Technology, for example, has revolutionized the craft of watchmaking. Citizen has always been popular amongst their users for their budget watches that deliver performance. With watches encompassing various categories, citizen watches are owned and cherished worldwide. The Eco-Drive feature in Citizen watches has successfully replaced over 10 million batteries worldwide and counting…

Eco-drive is a patented technology by Citizen Watches which is based on the photovoltaic Eco-drive Caliber 7878 Movement. The movement was originally designed to use Solar Energy as a means of charging a watch battery. Later it was improved to use any means of light and the mechanism allowed storage of excess power generated in a power cell. How cool is that! Any source of light, to be precise!

Moreover, once fully charged, the movement can function for up to 6 months without being charged again. It also has a movement feature that indicates ‘insufficient charge’ with the second hand jumping once every two seconds or with the minute hand moving in 1-minute increments. But this all happens with the time still being kept accurately. This is when you know you have to show your watch some light! 

In 2018, Citizen introduced the Eco-Drive Caliber 0100. That movement was capable of attaining accuracy of ±1 second per year. That is the most accurate quartz movement in the world. And that is the level of innovation on offer. Mind you, the specific watch that comes with that movement costs a staggering $16,800 as a result. Of course, you can attain many other Eco-Drive models for very affordable prices, without suffering much at all in terms of accuracy overall.

How long do citizen eco-drive watches last?

Citizen claims that their watches literally never stop. Stating that the rechargeable batteries last for up to 40 years and are very unlikely to fail, citizen promises reliability, durability, and functionality for the watches almost unheard of from other brands. The water-resistant watches only require basic maintenance once over 2-3 years and you are good to go. They also use lubricants in their Long-Lasting Precision movements that do not harden in over 20 years, enabling smooth and accurate timekeeping functionality for long periods of time. In short, you can expect your Citizen Eco-Drive timepiece to sit on your wrist, ticking away for many many years, giving you little to no trouble whatsoever on its own.

 

Precautions to be taken

In a few rare cases, the watches might experience damage due to excessive heating. Therefore, it is advisable to always maintain the temperature of these watches below 140°F. As bizarre as it may sound some people might hold the watch out in the sun to charge or hold it too close to a bulb for way too longer than they should be. The overheating thus caused might damage the power cells. As a result, the best practice would be to wear the timepiece on your wrist regularly to ensure the battery gets charged in the most natural and harmless way possible.

Without further ado, let us dive right into reviewing the best Eco-Drive watches by Citizen!

Best citizen Eco-Drive Watches of 2021.

Something to keep in mind is that this list is in no particular order, with each watch being unique and having its own advantages and disadvantages.

Citizen Satellite Wave GPS Diver 200m Watch

Part of the latest Citizen’s Promaster Sea line of men’s watches, it is the first light-powered watch with GPS satellite capabilities and a 200-meter depth diving function. Devised to receive position coordinates, date, and time data with accuracy from GPS Satellites, this sporty watch possesses the ability to display accurate data anywhere around the world! It also encompasses a unique ‘dive mode’ which shuts down all other functions except time which prevents erroneous time display.

Key Features:

  • Dive Mode: A power-saving accuracy maintenance mode activated by pressing the 2 o’clock and 4 o’clock buttons simultaneously.
  • 200 Meter depth diving function with water resistance.
  • F158 Eco-drive movement.
  • Titanium case treated with Duratect makes the already sturdy casing even stronger.
  • Uni-directional diving bezel.
  • Includes date aperture at 3 o’clock position.

Citizen Satellite Wave GPS Diver 200m Watch : Specifications

Case size – 47mm.
Case shape – Round.
Case material – Titanium.
Glass material – Sapphire crystal.
Strap material – Polyurethane.

Pros
  • Durable and reliable Eco-drive movement.
  • High Accuracy.

  • Doesn’t require a change of batteries.

Cons
  • Bulky; Large case.
  • Day and Power reserve Indication Combined.

  • Dive mode may not activate in case of insufficient charge.

Our Verdict: 4/5

 

Citizen Yoda, AW1513-05W Stars Wars Classic Watch

If you love great timepieces and the wise old YodaTM, this Star WarsTM timepiece is made for you.  The grey dial featuring a subtle YodaTM silhouette encompasses a hint of green and rose gold as the central theme. At 12’o clock, the dial shows the Jedi order symbol in rose gold with the hands replicating lightsabers. Elegantly incorporated in a stainless-steel rose gold dial, it is a delight to own this piece of memorabilia. It is a fairly subtle dress watch with just the right amount of fun!

Key Features:

  • Case back etching of Yoda’s famous quote “Do or not do, there is no try!”.
  • Time aperture set at 3 o’clock.
  • Leather Strap with beautiful stitching.
  • J810 movement; accuracy of ±1 sec per year.
  • Water-resistant up to 333ft/10 Bar.
  • Stainless steel case and bezel.

Citizen Yoda, AW1513-05W Stars Wars Classic Watch : Specifications

Case size – 42mm.
Case shape – Round.
Case material – Stainless Steel.
Glass material – Mineral Crystal.
Strap material – Leather.

Pros
  • Diverse design.
  • Eco-drive; No change of batteries required.

  • Safety Stitch on strap ensures durability.

  • Water resistant.

Cons
  • Leather Strap prone to wear and tear.

Our Verdict: 4.5/5

Citizen Crystal – CA0753-55E Eco-Drive Watch

This Swarovski® embedded watch is an elegant timepiece to make a statement with. A timeless chronograph that allows you to play classy with a touch of fashion. An air of bling. Not too much. Not too little. The Swarovski® crystal embedded bezel surrounds a matte black dial with hints of rose gold. The combination of black, white, and rose gold is well played throughout this Citizen Eco-drive watch and allows this chronograph, to look dressy, with an artistic and opulent flair

When the lights of a banquet hall reflect off of those crystals, the true visual value of the timepiece will be known. While seen as too flashy for some, the ones who love it will absolutely love it. The Swarovski® crystals make such an exquisite display, an affordable possibility. This isn’t the reserved elegance that we’re all used to. This is for an extra bit of rebellion. Especially in a modern context, with the world moving towards more casual and subtle accessorizing.

Key Features:

  • Chronograph plus 24/12-time feature.
  • Caliber B612 Movement with stainless steel casing.
  • Water-resistant up to 166ft.
  • Eco-drive light powered.

Citizen Crystal – CA0753-55E Ec Watch : Specifications

Case size – 42mm.
Case shape – Round.
Case material – Stainless Steel.
Glass material – Mineral Crystal.

Pros
  • Scratch resistant.
  • 12/24-hour time feature.

Cons
  • Crystals make the watch appear bulky and can be flashy to some.
  • To be handled with care.

Our Verdict: 4.5/5

 

Citizen Stiletto – AR3107-57E Watch

Citizen Stiletto is a rather simplistic and minimalistic dress watch that capitalizes on Citizen’s legacy of sleek and fine timepieces that are ageless and boast a very contemporary style. Bearing a unisex approach towards design, it is a gender-neutral watch that can be worn by the youth and experienced alike. The Eco-drive feature in fact ensures that this timeless watch goes all the way from your youth to your mature days. 

This watch comes under the same class as many Rados do. The main difference is that this is stainless steel, while the Rados tend to be ceramic. When I say, “same class”, I’m referring to the similarity in terms of appearance. It’s a very Avant-Garde style, with the black or dark grey colored case and bracelet of the watch. The ones who love it will really do so!

Key Features:

  • Caliber G872, 2 hand movement.
  • Compact casing with a single crown for a classy approach.
  • Bracelet style band.
  • Sapphire crystal that ensures scratch resistance.
  • Eco-drive- light powered.
  • Splash resistant.

Citizen Stiletto – AR3107-57E Watch : Specifications

Case size – 28x38mm.
Case shape – Rectangular.
Case material – Sapphire Steel.
Glass material – Mineral Crystal.
Strap material – Stainless Steel.

Pros
  • Precise movement with exceptional accuracy.
  • Comfortable dial size with a slim dial.

  • Durable.

  • Jewelry style clasp.

Cons
  • Not highly water resistant.

Our Verdict: 5/5

 

Citizen Promaster Tsuno Chronograph Racer Watch

Inspired by an iconic 1970s bullhead chronograph produced by Citizen, this unique Citizen timepiece was created to commemorate the brand’s 100th anniversary. This timepiece is a beast in terms of its performance and functionality. Encapsulated with the best of features including a chronograph, tachymeter, alarm, instantaneous fly back, power reserve and date, it also boasts durability owing to its high-quality build. The eco-drive feature provides for a no-hassle experience and contributes to the overall performance of the timepiece and makes it a timepiece in the true sense. 

Apart from all of the objective facts and features on paper, this is really an interesting timepiece. Look at its design, for example. Unique, timeless, and unbelievably sporty. It’s a fantastic choice for sporty as well as casual occasions. The ‘Panda dial’ version is really attractive and adds a sense of class to all occasions like it was always meant to.

And add to all of this, the fact that this is water-resistant to 200m, it becomes multiple times more appealing. After all, that’s the same amount of water resistance many iconic dive watches such as the Seiko SKX007 and the Citizen NY0040 come with. This means you can take it to the pool and even go basic diving if you want to. How wonderful! Just make sure you keep the leather strap away and opt for maybe a rubber strap or a NATO.

Key Features:

  • Citizen Eco-drive E210 movement with solar-powered quartz mechanism and power reserve indicator.
  • Bullhead chronograph with crowns and pushers positioned at 11 o’clock, 12 o’clock, 1 o’clock, and 5 o’clock.
  • Integrated bracelet with double folding clasp adding to the overall finishing.
  • A unique assortment of features including instantaneous flyback which is rare to find at the given price point.
  • Date aperture positioned between 1 and 2 o’clock without making the dial look too crowded.

Citizen Promaster Tsuno Chronograph Racer Watch : Specifications

Case size – 45mm.
Case shape – Round.

Pros
  • Best watch in terms of price point and luxurious features.
  • Unique positioning of features with dial gives a balanced effect.

  • Stainless Steel Screw back case.

  • 200m of water resistance. Suitable for even diving.

Cons
  • Bulky with heightened dial.
  • Chronograph pushers need a little force to activate.

Our Verdict: 4/5

Summary

So, this was our review of our favorite Citizen Eco-Drive watch models under $2000. These are durable watches that not only add to your looks but also turn out to be a fruitful investment. With the durability and pricing, they really are timeless pieces assuring quality. Tell us in the comments what you like about Eco-drive watches and what features you prefer in your Citizen Eco-drive.

If you enjoyed reading our article, check out our latest blog on the top 10 pilot watches that no one can fail to admire! Stay tuned for more such watch related content. Thanks for reading our blog.

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