Hasselblad, best known for its professional medium-format film and digital cameras, announced its plans to release a small mirrorless camera with the intention of bringing the coveted Hasselblad name to a broader market. The project is dubbed "Lunar" -- possibly because it costs as much as a moon rock.
Although Hasselblad has only released illustrations of the Lunar, it is scheduled for release in the first half of 2013 for around €5000, which is more than $6200 in Australian currency.
What can Hasselblad possibly offer for such an extravagant price? The specs look to be mostly standard fare for a high-end mirrorless camera, with a 24.3MP APS-C sensor, full HD video recording and a 3-inch display. What really jumps out as a wallet-busting attribute are the materials wrapping the Lunar. Hasselblad claims it will have carbon fibre, titanium, wood, leather and -- wait for it -- GOLD. Yeah, GOLD.
Clearly, Hasselblad has a different idea from most concerning what accessibility is in terms of price. While Leica seems to have cornered the market for people looking to spend $7000 on a small-ish camera with their M series full-frame rangefinders, Hasselblad will have to work hard to convinceg people that there is a reason to invest in a Lunar beyond sheer rich-guy appeal.
Check out the full press release with specs here.
UPDATE: Various sources on the ground at Photokina 2012 have confirmed that the Lunar is pretty much a $1500 Sony NEX-7 on the inside, including the same sensor and lens mount compatible with E and A lenses. It looks like Hasselblad just hurled some opulence on the outside and is charging a fortune for it. Check out photos of the camera at PetaPixel and PopPhoto.