Pelikan’s first foray into the school pen market was the 120 released in the mid 1950’s. Prior to that, their focus had been on writing implements designed almost exclusively for adults. After five years of experience in that market, Pelikan began production of the first Pelikano model which was launched on March 22, 1960. The Pelikano’s design was based on lessons learned from the 120 as well as the feedback they received from teachers. The model line is now 57 years old and it shows no signs of slowing down. The Pelikano has undergone many design changes over its nearly six decades in addition to spawning other products such as the Pelikano Junior. The most recent version of the Pelikano has been the P480, first released in 2010 as a significant redesign to the prior P460 and updated again in 2015. The current P480 has an opaque rather than transparent grip and an ink view window on its barrel, distinguishing it from its predecessor. Pelikan appears to be adding an upgraded version of the Pelikano to the line-up. Made from better materials and with a more adult design, their newest creation has been dubbed the Pelikano Up fountain pen.
The Pelikano Up was first teased yesterday on the company’s Facebook and Instagram pages. The tagline reads, “Upgrade your handwriting.” This new pen looks to incorporate higher quality materials into the existing form factor while still remaining affordable. Gone is the plastic of the current P480 and, in its place, the Up will feature an aluminum cap and body along with a metal clip. Carried over will be the soft grip zone on the section and the ink view window on the barrel. “Pelikano Up” is inscribed along the length of the barrel and the cap top features the modern one chick company logo. Like the current generation, the Up will be available in right and left-handed versions with un-plated, iridium tipped stainless steel nibs. The current models have A, F, M, and L nibs so it would not be unreasonable to expect the same nibs sizes for the Up. Colors upon launch will include Champagne and Anthracite. Of course, both pens will be cartridge only models. As far as when these may come to market, the only time frame that Pelikan has announced is “coming soon.” Pricing is not entirely clear but from some what I’ve seen, these will look to sell for about €8-10 more than the standard P480, a reasonable mark-up for what you’re getting. I like the look of the Up which seems poised to go against the likes of the Lamy Al-Star. What are your thoughts?