Talk to me about Citizen Eco-Drive watches…

Self-winding watch specialist at Fellows Auctioneers.

Kes Crockett | Watch Department

If you are a watch enthusiast who places a high level of importance on the accuracy of your timepiece, you will likely have come to the realisation that mechanical movements can be excellent, but will never be a match for their quartz counterparts. Within the subcategory of quartz-powered watches, there are some truly exceptional performers, the pinnacle of which being the Citizen Calibre 0100. Released in 2019 it boasts an incredible level of precision, keeping time to within just 1 second per year.

Here we speak to Watch Consultant Kes Crockett about these precision Citizen watches.

Citizen Watches

Citizen have been a world leader in the field of battery-powered watches since the Quartz crisis in the 1970s and they have positioned themselves uniquely in the market with their innovative use of light as a charging source. The use of this technology all but eliminates the annoying inconvenience of regular battery changes, and more importantly the need to dispose of these environmentally harmful power cells. The first watch to use this style of mechanism made its debut in 1976, featuring four small photovoltaic cells visible on the dial, and was named the Citizen Quartz Crystron Solar Cell. Improved and fine-tuned over subsequent years, models utilising this technology were branded Eco-Drive and at the present time, Eco-Drive movements are used in around 80% of the brand’s watches.

The really impressive thing about this technology is that both sunlight and artificial light work to charge the battery and even a very dim light source will keep the power reserve topped up. Once fully charged the battery should last around 6 months without further exposure to light, and for some models, this increases to an astonishing 7 years. The system is quite simple in reality and uses an inbuilt solar cell sitting either below a translucent dial, or above a conventional dial in the form of a ring. This solar cell converts the light it receives into electrical energy and this energy in turn charges a lithium-ion battery which powers the quartz movement. One of the clever techniques used to maximise the power reserve is a hibernation mode which sees the hands stop completely when the watch is in darkness for an extended period. Meanwhile, the quartz movement continues to keep track of time and when the watch is again exposed to light, the hands spring into life and make their way to the correct position on the dial, displaying the current time.

Citizen watches at auction

Citizen watches are a regular sight in the Watches and Watch Accessories auction here at Fellows and the sale taking place on October 24th is no exception. Lots 144, 145 and 147 provide an excellent opportunity for watch buyers to purchase one of the most accurate and reliable movements available today at a very affordable price point.

Whilst there are certainly more luxurious watches on the market, it is hard to beat a Citizen Eco-Drive for environmentally, and budget friendly timekeeping!

145 4


Our valuations are free, with no obligation to sell with us. Our experts will value your item with an estimate, so you can find out what it could achieve at auction.

The process is simple. You can fill in a form online or book an appointment to visit either of our offices in Birmingham or London. Virtual valuation appointments are also available.

You May Also Like