News: M120 Green-Black Special Edition

Pelikan M120 2016 Special Edition

Pelikan M120 for 2016 (click to enlarge)

Amongst the rumors that have surfaced about Pelikan’s 2016 line-up, the one that I was most dubious of was news of a forthcoming M120.  The original 120 was made from 1955-1965 as a school pen, Pelikan’s first entry into that market.  The lessons learned from the 120 would ultimately go on to inform the design and marketing of the first Pelikano released some five years later in 1960.  Before proceeding, it is important to distinguish between the original 120, often referred to as ‘Type I,’ and a second run of pens under the same name but with somewhat different styling made under contract by Merz & Krell from 1973-1977, the so-called ‘Type II.’  Rumors of a special edition replica paying homage to the original 120 may have just gained a bit more credibility.  Penworld, a long respected family run business out of Antwerp, Belgium since 1924, has announced via Twitter and Instagram news of the upcoming M120.  Quoted to be available some time around March of this year, this new release looks to be true to the original save for the appearance of the nib.

 

Pelikan 120 Type I Capped

Pelikan 120 Type I (1955-1965)

Pelikan 120 Type I Posted

 

Pelikan 120 Merz & Krell Type II Capped

Pelikan 120 Merz & Krell Type II (1973-1977)

Pelikan 120 Merz & Krell Type II Posted

 

Pelikan M120 for 2016

Pelikan M120, 2016 Re-issue

 

Like the original, the barrel of the M120 appears to be green with a green ink window.  The section, piston knob, and cap are done in black and the furniture is gold-plated.  There is a single cap band and the clip is the traditional pelican’s beak.  There are no trim rings adorning this model owing to the original target of the lower end school pen market.  The cap top notably now sports the single chick logo in place since 2003.  The nib historically was gold-plated stainless steel which also looks to have been continued with the replica, all-be-it with the modern feed rather than the original ebonite feed with longitudinal fins.  Interestingly, the new M120 appears to have a unique engraving on the nib that will allow it to stand out from the original.  The engraving is purported to have been inspired by a bit of flourish taken from a historic Günther Wagner price list.

Pelikan M120 Nib

Pelikan M120 nib with new engraving inspired by a historic price list

 

The original 120 continues to be a reliable pen used in daily service to the pleasure of many still to this day.  I’m sure that there is a segment out there that will welcome this modern refresh.  What are your thoughts on the upcoming M120?  Perhaps not as stately or exotic as the Grand Place but, if priced right, could certainly be a work horse fountain pen with neat historic roots.  I’ll be very interested to see where Pelikan prices the M120 as there is no similar model right now from which we can extrapolate a potential price point (perhaps the M200?).

Pelikan M120 Gift Box

M120 historic gift box and ink

 

UPDATE  2/1/16: La Couronne du Comte is now taking pre-orders for an anticipated March 2016 arrival.  The price being asked is 189 € ($205.29).  For those of us that live outside of the European Union, the price is 156.20 € ($169.66) minus the VAT.  The pen is reported to include a historic gift box and a bottle of ink.  I cannot say that I am surprised by the pricing but it does feel a bit like luxury pricing attached to school pen styling.  I’ll be curious to see how that may impact the sale of this model.  I fully expect U.S. MSRP and the subsequent street price to be higher than what will be available overseas.  

Further Reading:

The Code of the 120 Schulfüller

Merz & Krell – Who Were They?

22 responses

  1. I really like seeing the old-style molded cap-top logo make a return — it would be great if it also returned to the M2xx line, in place of the gold printed one.

    I very much hope the nib is the M200 format, and not the M100 (nor some other format).

    The gold-colored furniture looks so nice with the green barrel. I’d also like to see an “M125”, with silver-colored furniture and a non-plated stainless steel nib — maybe with a blue or black barrel instead of green …

    And … this pen would have been perfect for last year’s Hub.

    Finally — if it’s truly a Schulfüller then IMHO the MSRP shouldn’t be higher than 60 euros. In any case, if it is 60 euros (or less), then I’ll buy one myself.

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    • Much more than 60 euros I’m afraid Constance, at least from one vendor. We’ll have to see what pricing may be asked once other vendors have time to list the model on their sites. Perhaps Pelikan is trying to get away from its school pen roots and move it into more of a luxury pricing but there isn’t enough offered here to go along with that price tag.

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  2. This is trouble for me. The 120 was my vey first ‘real’ fountain pen. I’d had Sheaffer’s cartridge school pens but this was a ‘serious’ fountain pen. I bought that pen in the 1970’s, I still have it and though the gold masking on the steel nib is all but gone, it still writes just as well as it did the day I bought it.

    If this new version actually does debut, I have a hard time imagining what will keep me from being one of those at the head of the line. Of course I am confident that it will sell for a price orders of magnitude higher than my late 70’s model, too bad for me. I have my fantasies concerning the details; I doubt it will come to pass but my preference would be for the cap top emblem to be engraved in the same manner as the older pens, the 100’s, 400’s and the 140’s. The number of chicks is of no concern to me, but I’m sure there will be a story behind it.

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    • The cap top is engraved, not printed. It is not filled but just plain black. You are correct about the pricing being orders of magnitude higher than previously offered versions. I will have to look for an original advert and see what the original price was. It would be interesting to adjust for inflation and see what it would have been in terms of today’s dollars.

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      • I can tell you that in 1955, the Type I 120 retailed for 7.60 German Marks according to Pelikan’s 1955 catalog. The Type II 120 retailed for $7.50 in the USA during the 1970’s based on an advertisement. Even adjusting for inflation, the prices are no where near what is going to be asked for this re-issue.

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  3. I think it looks nice and I’m intrigued. Yes, it’s pricey, but not more so than the recent limited Pelikan M201s, right? Those had steel nibs. And those were snapped up, as far as I could see. Depending on the numbers produced in the edition, I’m more interested in this M120 than I was in those, candidly.

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    • I share your opinion of this pens looks and would love to own one. I think the difference between the M120 and an M201 is that the M120 has roots as a school pen and retailed for 7.60 German Marks when it was released in 1955. The mark up on what is essentially the same pen as the original seems quite high here, especially when the original can still be purchased in excellent condition at a fraction of the cost. Also, the M201’s aren’t great comparisons as there were only 100 of each made making them ultra limited which obviously would factor in on pricing.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. As a collector I’m really interested in this edition. Surely it is not equal to eg. M800 Grand Place, but it is a retro edition with an outstanding shape (back in time). My retailer told me it will be a limited edition in a limited quantity. I think it will be the length of the usual M 200.

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    • I was expecting a limited run but I still don’t think that justifies the price being asked. I have yet to see reports of these from US vendors and questions whether it will be released in the US at all.

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  5. I just want to tell you, Pelikan lovers, that I am very satisfied with my new Pelikan M120N with F nib!

    Why, when I have a lot of nice pens of different brands? (And I know I have said these kind of things before…)
    As I am often on the go and cannot spend hours at a proper desk, I need a pen that I always can carry with me.
    The M120N meets all my criteria:

    I. It fits securely in my shirtpocket, in opposite to larger, or longer, pens like my Parker 51s, my Sailor Realo etc.
    II. It writes like dream and is fine enough for smaller writing. (Although I would have preferred a good EF, but as I got this M120N F at a price near the price of a M200, I did not hesitate.)
    III. The green ink-window is clearer than the gray ones of my M200s and the pen i said to hold 0.9 mL of ink, which is a decent amount.
    IV. I love the Retro design.
    V. I really appreciate that Pelikan is a company that you, as the smallest of customers, can communicate with. I feel appreciated, respected and valued!
    VI. In short, the M120N “sings” for me. I mean I have a lot of good writers, some pens very beautiful, but the M120N is the one and only pen that fills all my criteria, and I feel that this pen will be my lifetime companion. (M200 green marble, comes close I must admit…)

    It’s a pity for the nice presentation box, as the pen is never to return to it, but it’s a great reminder that the M120N constitutes a great gift!

    Lennart Wennberg

    PS: I am a happy customer of MarteModena in Italy, from were I bought this pen yat a very decent price. Shipped in the presentation box with a total amount significantly lower than the amounts mentioned above,

    Like

    • I have an M120N in EF and it may be one of the best modern Pelikan EFs that I’ve used out of the box. This has been my go to pen for the last 3 weeks and I have enjoyed it tremendously. Once I’m done putting it through its paces, I’ll probably add my voice to the reviews. Thanks for sharing your experience!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Hello,
    if I have to buy a single Pelikan fountain pen for everyday , what model to choose?
    M200, M205 , M120 ?
    or another model ?
    thank you
    Ch Lafont (France)

    Like

  7. Pingback: 2016 In Review: A Look Back At Pelikan’s Line-up « The Pelikan's Perch

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