1995 Citizen Eco-Drive
In this year Citizen introduced the Eco-Drive line to Asia, Latin America and Europe. The line was introduced in the United States in 1996.
This is one (7875-HO4945 TA 770965 GN-4W-UL) of the 3 models introduced in 1995. In this important development of the solar watch, Citizen placed the solar panel under the dial, not directly on the dial as they had done on their first Cryston model in 1976 and the Analog with Solar Cell line beginning in 1986.
The Eco-Drive represented several important improvements for Citizen. Like the “Analog with Solar Cell” design, it used the more efficient amorphous silicon cell. The cell was so efficient that it was not necessary to have the cell part of the design of the face. The cell could be beneath the dial. As long the dial material was sufficiently translucent, enough light would get through to the cell. This opened up many design possibilities – so that the solar watch could finally look like anything – and it chose to look like any other watch.
In addition, the Eco-Drive watch used a lithium-ion battery, greatly increasing its ability to hold a charge. The power reserve could last up to six months.
Comment: This year ends the early phase of solar watch development. Citizen perfected the technology so that it was possible to make the solar watch look like any other watch.