Moto Koure MK I: Modern Watchmaking Meets Classic Racing

Autstralian Micro-Brand Moto Koure Shows What Car-Inspired Watches Should Look Like with Their MK I.

You don’t often think of Australia as a fertile ground for new watch brands, or for watches in general, come to think of it. Cars, yes. Watches, no. But, shiny new watchmaker, Moto Koure, is looking to change that. Oh, and did I mention their watches are inspired by 1960s and 1970s cars? Swoon.

Moto Koure MK 1 Automatic Wood Green

Moto Koure MK 1 Automatic in Green

When I say that Justin Khoury founded Sydney, Australia-based “micro brand” Moto Koure recently, I really, really mean recently. As a matter of fact, the first batch of Seiko movement-powered watches, the MK I went on pre-sale only a few days ago. And, trust me, this brand is definitely worth a look.

 

I haven’t had an opportunity to get up close and personal with either the mechanical or mecha-quartz variants of the Moto Koure MK I (yet), but any watch brand that shares my love of classic cars and innovative watches surely is worth taking a very close look at. Consider this post a primer for my up-coming “on-the-wrist” review of the Moto Koure MK I; coming in a few months.

1966 Ferrari 12 Cylinder F1

1966 Ferrari 12 Cylinder F1 Racer

Please allow me the opportunity to lay out the raison d’etre behind Moto Koure. It follows rather closely to that of this very blog. Cars are beautiful. Cars are among the most breathtaking things ever created; especially the stunning sports cars and GT cars of the ‘50s, ‘60s and ’70s.

 

The Jaguar XKE, Aston Martin DB5, Lamborghini Miura and Ferrari 250 Testa Rossa are things of such legendary beauty that had Leonardo Da Vinci been alive in 1957, the Mona Lisa would have been called the Mona Testa Rossa. And, timepieces that are innovative in design, purpose or technology are just as breathtaking.

1955 Jaguar D-Type

1955 Jaguar D-Type

That’s actually why I created TickTickVroom.com (see Corvette Stingray review), and that is also why Justin Khoury created Moto Koure. I kinda’ feel like a smitten schoolboy over these watches. I know it’s not really “journalistic impartiality”, but I really love the Moto Koure MK I. So, I guess I should probably get to the watches.

 

There are two movement options for the MK I, a Seiko VK series mecha-quartz, and a Seiko NE88 mechanical automatic. Both are two-register chronographs and both call a polished 40mm by 44mm stainless steel case with sapphire crystal home. The case is a modified tank-style with rounded corners (let’s call it a 0.25-inch radius for a guess) and invisible lugs holding driving glove inspired leather straps.

 

Moto Koure says the MK I design is:

“heavily inspired by 1960’s and 1970’s motoring and ultimately set out to build a brand based on elegance and racing. Two often contradictory points which resulted in some beautifully bold designs in this era.” 

Moto Koure MK 1 Mech-Quartz Diamond Burgundy Silver

Moto Koure MK 1 Mech-Quartz – Burgundy

I take mucho issue with this. While, yes, the MK I is well inspired by classic motoring, the whole “contradictory points” of elegance and racing is complete and utter bull-hockey (pardon my French). There are few things ever created that are more elegant and graceful as a 1960s Ferrari F1 car or the 1955 Jaguar D-Type racer.

 

But, I digress. Semantics aside, back to the watch. The MK I case reminds me a bit of the chrome luggage racks you’d find on the back of a 1960’s GT car. But, that may just be me. However, it’s the dial that really ties the watch to its motoring inspiration.

 

The Seiko NE88 automatic, fully mechanical version is graced with a beautifully lacquered metallic dial graced with a wood inlay for the two-register column-wheel chronograph and date window, which immediately hearkens back to the maple or walnut bezel around the instrument cluster of a classic sports car. I grew up driving ‘70s MG Midgets and B-GTs and a late ‘80s Jaguar XJS, and this dial definitely brings back memories.

Moto Koure MK 1 Automatic Wood Blue

Moto Koure MK 1 Automatic – Blue

 

The Seiko VK series mech-quartz model of the MK I is a bit sportier. In place of the wood is either a pebbled-leather or diamond plate two-toned dial. While still quite cool, I think I prefer the wood of the MK I automatic. In any case, I’m rather excited to review the automatic and mech-quartz. Both versions come in a variety of colors, but I fell in love with the Green and Blue automatics and the Burgundy auto-quartz. What can I say, I’m a sucker for gem-tones.

 

Like I said, pre-orders just started. But the retail price of the Moto Koure MK I automatic is $979 and the MK I mecha-quartz is $444. But, Moto Koure is offering significant pre-order discounts. 

Early Pricing for the automatic version will be:

  • For the first 100 purchasers – $779USD (50% deposit payable now)
  • For the next 100 purchasers – $819USD (50% deposit payable now)
  • Price available until full production is completed- $879USD (50% deposit payable now)
Moto Koure MK 1 Automatic Wood Champagne

Moto Koure MK 1 Automatic – Champagne

for the mecha-quartz:

  • Pricing for the mecha-quartz version will be:
  • For the first 150 purchasers – $269USD (50% deposit payable now)
  • For then next 150 purchasers – $319USD (50% deposit payable now)
  • Price available until full production is completed – $394USD (50% deposit payable now)
  • Retail price of $444USD 
Moto Koure MK 1 Mech-Quartz Pebbled Leather Black

Moto Koure MK 1 Mech-Quartz Pebbled Leather

Manufactured by the same company that produces Stuckx watches of KickStarter fame, the Moto Koure has pretty decent tech spec chops. Check out the Technical Specifications below… Make sure to stay tuned to TickTickVroom.com for our review of the Moto Koure MK I. For more information and to pre-order, visit http://www.motokoure.com. Tell them TickTickVroom.com sent you.

 

Moto Koure MK I Tech Specs:

MK I Automatic:

  • Color options: Blue, British racing green, brown and champagne
  • Movement: Seiko NE88
  • Strap: European perforated leather
  • Case: 316L Stainless Steel
  • Case dimensions: 40x44mm – thickness 15mm
  • Lens: Sapphire crystal lens with anti-reflective coating
  • Case back: Solid case back with stamping
  • Water resistance: 5 ATM
  • Dial: Multi-layer dial with wood imprint
    • Old Radium SL Lume on the indexes 0.10 mm thick
  • Hands: Shiny chrome with old radium SL lume
  • Pushers: Stainless steel
  • Crown: Stainless steel

MK I Mecha-Quartz:

  • Color options: Black and silver options for pebbled leather variant and silver and burgundy for the diamond plated variant
  • Movement: Seiko VK series
  • Strap: European perforated leather
  • Case: 316L Stainless Steel
  • Case dimensions: 40x44mm – thickness 13mm
  • Lens: Sapphire crystal lens with anti-reflective coating
  • Case back: Solid case back with stamping
  • Water resistance: 5 ATM
  • Dial: Multi-layer dial (one variation with pebbled leather texturing, one variation with diamond plated imprint)
    • Old Radium SL Lume on the indexes 0.10 mm thick
  • Hands: Shiny chrome with old radium SL lume
  • Pushers: Stainless steel
  • Crown: Stainless steel

Moto Koure MK 1 Mech-Quartz Diamond Silver Black Moto Koure MK 1 Automatic Wood Bronze Moto Koure MK 1 Mech-Quartz Diamond Silver White 

Author: Nick Glasnovich

Founder & Executive Editor of TickTickVroom.com.

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2 Comments

  1. Hi Nick,

    Do you have a contact number for Moto Koure – i purchased a watch on 26 November, but they are not responding to my emails.

    Thanks in advance.

    Post a Reply
    • Hey Scott,

      Sorry. I only communicated with Justin Khoury via email. I would search MotoKoure.com on Whois.com. The WhoIs record will likely have a phone number and direct email address.

      Good luck,
      Nick

      Post a Reply

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