All I can say is, "Wow!" But, let me preface that comment with a little background and what I am comparing my first Alpina to.
Until now my little collection has consisted of the following:
Steinhart Ocean Titanium Premium - ETA 2892-A2 Top
Steinhart Nav B-Uhr 44 Premium - ETA 2892-A2 Top
Hamilton Jazzmaster Slim Auto - ETA 2892-A2
Eterna 1948 Legacy - Gray Dial Sellita SW300-1
Seiko SARB033 - 6R15C
Seiko SARB035 - 6R15C
Polar Swiss Seamaster 120 - ETA 2824
All of these watches are superb, beautiful watches, some of the very best in my opinion. They look great and they are keeping time within COSC standards.
So, they are tough acts to follow, but this new Alpina, the Pilot Automatic 44mm, with t's gorgeous navy blue sun ray dial and 44mm case exceeds my expectations and has very quickly over the past two days become my favorite watch. Like my other watches it is already proving to be within COSC standards. But, what really surprised me most was how this watch wears on my medium-sized 7-¼ inch wrist—thanks to the lugs being curved down slightly below the bottom of the case back it wraps around my wrist and clings in a comfortable way much like a smaller watch might. It's big, but not overwhelming and compared to my Steinhart Nav B pilot it looks a little smaller. The Nav B lies more flat on the wrist and that makes it look longer from lug to lug. The thickness of the Alpina is also much thinner than I expected at around 11mm; it's not like wearing a tuna can on my wrist, something I am truly not fond of. In fact, one of the criteria that I have for buying watches these days is that it be relatively thin, no thicker than 12mm, and the thinner the better (the Hamilton Jazzmaster Slim is only 8.35mm thick, the Eterna about 9mm).
I immediately swapped out the beautiful stainless bracelet that has a butterfly deployment clasp for a new Steinhart leather strap. The weight of the Alpina with the bracelet is very heavy, too heavy for my tastes; with the strap it weighs in at 90 grams, heavy enough. The Steinhart strap while very thick turns out to be soft and flexible enough to not feel stiff and the 22mm size with 22mm buckle lends itself perfectly to the large size of the Alpina case. And, while I appreciate a larger crown on mechanical watches, and this Alpina has a big one, it is a little tough on the fingers to wind it. The Nav B is easier to turn and softer on the grip. Well, I guess you can't have everything, eh? Minor complaint of an overly nit-picking perfectionist.
The stock photos I saw before buying this Alpina did not really show it's true beauty, the brushed stainless case accented with a polished bezel and a thin polished bevel along the sides of the top of the case. Even my photos do not do it justice, it simply must be seen in person to truly appreciate its beauty.
Next up, hopefully delivered tomorrow or the next day, will be my second Alpina, the Alpiner Automatic 4 with a black dial and black strap. Its case may be a little thicker than my criteria mentioned above (I think it measures about 13.2mm, although there are no official specs to support that) I am hoping it will also wrap around my wrist like the Pilot does. If it meets or exceeds my expectations as the Pilot does, I will be an Alpina fan forever.