Victorinox Swiss Army INOX 1

The Victorinox Swiss Army I.N.O.X. watch was officially launched in Malaysia yesterday. The latest and most robust member of the VSA family was launched by Victorinox Swiss Army product director Francois Nunez and Kuang Ming Woon, GM of local distributor FJ Benjamin, at an event in KL.

“I.N.O.X. demonstrates a level of robustness never before achieved in watchmaking. Designed to withstand unusual stress, it has passed with flying colours a ruthless battery of 130 strength tests,” Nunez said.

Of the 130 tests, some really stand out. For instance, the I.N.O.X. is claimed to be able to withstand eight tonnes of hydraulic pressure, can resist being driven over by a 64-tonne military tank, temperatures ranging from -57 to 71 degrees Celsius (US Army standard for the manufacture of missiles), a fall of 10 metres on a smooth concrete surface (equivalent to three floors, 50 km/h), exposure to a flame at a distance of 5 mm for over a minute and an altitude of 21,300 metres (twice the height at which commercial airliners fly).

Owners are unlikely to encounter these extreme situations, but may be assured to hear that the I.N.O.X. emerged from two hours in a washing machine at 90 deg C and full spin cycle, alive.

Despite all this, it doesn’t look like a brick. The Swiss-made watch comes in a stainless steel 43 mm case (the name I.N.O.X. comes from the French word for stainless steel) housing a Swiss-made Ronda 715 quartz movement. The screw-on caseback is also in stainless steel. It’s water resistant to 200 metres.

Interesting to note that the indexes on the dial are stamped into the surface, and not stuck on, so that they won’t fall off in extreme conditions. Sapphire crystal with triple anti-reflection treatment means that the viewing surface is scratch-resistant and always legible.

Three colours – black, khaki green, navy blue – are available, each with a matching rubber strap. While the glass is anti-scratch, the polished hexagonal bezel isn’t. Should you want to keep that pristine as well, the I.N.O.X. comes with a “bumper” made of silicone and nylon. The removable protector gives the watch a completely different look and image, so it isn’t a stretch to say that the I.N.O.X. is two watches in one. Additionally, VSA says that the 130 tests were done without the bumper.

The Victorinox Swiss Army I.N.O.X. is now on sale at authorised dealers for RM1,699.