Circula is one of the oldest German watch microbrands with its roots extending back to 1955 when the Grandfather of the new owner started his own watch brand, a German company making new strides a decade after the war, Circula was created, an independent watch brand with raw watchmaking passion behind it.
However, the Circula brand had to go on untimely hiatus for some time and it was recently revived in 2016 by the grandson making it the 3rd generation owner which has since set the sails for a new direction for the brand that I think watch enthusiasts will find inspiring.
In 2017, the company launched its first Kickstarter campaign to finance their comeback plan to revive the Circula brand with two unique offerings, their premium New Old Stock PUW watch movements from the 1970’s that were stored and forgotten until they were found in storage decades later. The PUW versions of their offering have been made available for a limited quantity sporting their classic watch design.
They created a more affordable timepiece that sporting a similar design, however they manage to bring down the price thanks to a Miyota movement to make Circula offering more affordable for everyone, and it so happens we will be taking a closer look at this watch today.
With great timing for a comeback and persistence towards the new revival, The success of the kickstarter campaign put Circula back in the watchmaking map and are finally coming back.
The Circula watch brand represents that the family passion for watchmaking is still alive and kicking today, so when they reached out to us to review their new watches, we couldn’t possibly say no.
Their watches are beautiful and while we couldn’t get our hands on one of their premium watches that houses their NOS PUW movements, we managed to get a look at their cheaper watch offering.
The Circula Classic Automatic White
The Circula Classic Automatic measures 39mm wide and 10.1mm thick. With its thin and lightweight profile, the Circula Classic makes an excellent dress watch.
The watch’s silver-colored case is made of 316L stainless steel with a polished and brushed finish. It has an embossed crown that looks like an actual crown, adding a luxurious feel to the overall design.
It has a transparent sapphire case back that makes it easier to view the inner workings of the watch, which in this case we have the Miyota movement powering the beat of this watch.
The dial is protected with a scratch-resistant, double-domed sapphire crystal with double anti-reflective treatment. The special AR treatment applied to the glass makes the dial easy to see even under direct sunlight and fairs well in comparison to many other watches within this price range which seems like many brands tend to drop the ball here. The crystal also has an anti-fingerprint coating to prevent smudges and prints from obscuring the clear view of the dial.
The Circula Classic comes with three strap design options. You can choose to go for the brown or black plant-tanned leather straps which are handmade and weren’t subjected to any chemical sealing. There’s also an option for a silver stainless steel mesh for a more elegant presentation which we were fortunate to get and its super high quality. All straps are locked into place using a quick interchange system.
Circula Classic Automatic and all watches made by the company are hand-assembled in Pforzheim, Germany. They also come in a nice package and a two-year warranty. The guarantee covers damages on the movement, dial, and hands, so long as the source of errors is from the manufacturing side which is great for new customers looking to get their hands on a Circula timepiece without the risk of being left out in the dark if anything does go wrong.
Design and Movement
The Circula Classic Automatic’s dial is presented similarly to how a luxury timepiece should be made. It has a Clous de Paris pattern with anthracite hands that are often seen in more expensive Bauhaus products.
The watch has silver-tone applied hour markers that are aligned with minute markers on the outer dial. These minute markers perfectly align with the movement of the second hand, proving the accuracy of the movement installed on the watch.
The Circula Classic Automatic uses a 24-jewel, Miyota caliber 9015 automatic movement. This movement has a good reputation for its precision and reliability. It has an accuracy of -5/+10 seconds per day, which is more than acceptable considering this is a mid-range watch. The Circula Classic also has a 42-hour power reserve.
There are only two possible downsides to this watch: one, it doesn’t have a date window; and two, it doesn’t have lume on the hands. But these features are optional and the exclusion of these makes the watch face look more consistent and cleaner.
Despite being a dress watch, the Circula Classic Automatic has a 50-meter water-resistance rating. This helps the watch retain its reliability even when splashed or accidentally dropped into shallow waters but it its not recommended to take it for a swim.
Who Is This Watch For?
The Circula Classic Automatic is for wearers who are looking for a minimalistic dress watch to dress down, or dress up, then the Circula proves that you can do it with style without selling out to a cheap quartz dress watch. Wear it at any casual or formal occasions with ease and its elegance will likely steal a few eyes to your wrist.
If you’re looking for an affordable dress watch to go with your daily fashion style then the clean minimalistic design of the Circula is a strong contender on your shortlist of Automatic watches that has an inspirational past in horology that you won’t find with any other watch with a sub $300 price tag.
Pros and Cons
Here are the advantages and disadvantages of the Circula Classic Automatic, and in all honesty, there were a few things Circular did wrong, but they did so much right with the brand’s rebirth.
It should be noted that the packaging is simple and nothing to write home about, there are no polished wooden boxes in this launch, however, there classy royal green box was a great choice and its worth mentioning that it reminds me of Rolexes colored boxes.
Little to no packaging means, zero waste on filler material. You get all the essentials the watch, micro cloth, and box, what more would you wish for.
- Classic design that looks expensive
- The highly legible watch face perfect for all occasions
- Easy push-pull crown to easily set the time
- Acceptable accuracy of -5/+10 seconds per day
- Thin and lightweight and great for thin wrists
- Water-resistant up to 50m
- Love the quality of the mesh strap
- High-quality green box
- The strap adjustment on the clasp may come loose
Priced at around $350, the Circula Classic Automatic is a strong contender for dress watches in the mid-range market. This price is already inclusive of shipping costs, so this is another plus point for the product. If you consider the style and reliability of the watch’s movement, you can say that the Circula Classic Automatic is a great steal and overall a great addition to your collection that sports a classic Bauhaus design that works with any outfit you can throw at it.
I have high hopes for the success of Circula because they look like a watch brand that has a lot to offer and I would like to see them revisit their original sports watch designs.
What are your thoughts? leave them in the comments below.