Revealed last month in Switzerland at Baselworld 2011, the new Glashuette Original Sixties Square Tourbillon (Ref. 94-12-01-01-04) automatic watch will be issued in a limited edition of only 50 pieces available to the world’s financial elite and top executives of international corporations (as well as possibly some third-world warlords and heads of South American cartels.) Now, tell an average Jane about the global economic crisis.
The new wristwatch is powered by the GO’s in-house Caliber 94-12 self-winding movement. This seems to be a close relative (a brother, perhaps) of the movement that we have already seen in the Glashutte Original Sport Evolution Impact Tourbillon watch that was presented about three years ago.
Built on fifty jewels and featuring a flying tourbillon complication (the “flying” part here means that the escapement is not sitting on a bridge, but is cantilevered, being only supported at one side with a tiny beam,) the movement offers you everything that you expect form an ultra-luxury watch by GO: a tourbillon at 6 o’clock and the impeccable Panorama Date window at 12 o’clock.
The movement is nicely decorated with the signature Glashutte stripes on its bridges, blued polished screws and a skeletonized rotor with its oscillating weight done in 21-carat gold. Although the finish is sort of Spartan (which is, being honest, is traditional for the East German watchmaking brand,) the movement actually looks quite interesting thanks to its off-centered micro-rotor design (well, I think it would be more appropriate to call it a “medium-rotor” since the oscillating weight is clearly larger than that on your average “micro-rotor” caliber from a brand like, say, Piaget.)
Not very large (it measures just 32.20 mm in diameter and is only 5.40 millimeters thick,) the movement is fitted inside a compact case only 41.35 mm in width (setting crown not included.) The cushion-shaped body of the watch done in polished 18-carat rose gold and looks very modern despite its deliberately “vintage” styling.
Like the other members of the family, the watch features an understated dial with thin, luminous hands and calligraphic Arabic numerals at 3, 9 and 12 o’clock. Respectively, each hour marker comes duplicated with a small luminous spot that makes the watch stays more or less readable even in darkness.
Of course, this is neither a diver, nor an aviator so do not expect too much from it in terms of night-time legibility. Still, in a broad daylight it has no peers.
As it is always the case with GO’s watches, the model is perfectly integrated into the Sixties line of dressy timekeepers that offers both more or less affordable (starting at around $7000 after a discount) and very expensive models priced like a full size SUV.
This one will possibly be very expensive: around $100,000 or more.
UPDATE ON PRICE: Okay, its MSRP is $113,700, which is pretty steep, but not really surprising given the level of craftsmanship and a mix of precious metals that it offers. If you can afford this beauty, I just can’t recommend it strongly enough.
Photos: Glashütte Original
Glashuette Original Sixties Square Tourbillon Limited Edition (Ref. 94-12-01-01-04) automatic watch specification
Price: $113,700 (MSRP)
Movement: Automatic, GO caliber 94-12, 50 jewels, 32.2 mm in diameter, 5.4 mm in height, 21,600 vph, Nivarox flat spring with Breguet end curve, Made in Germany
Movement decoration: Skeletonized rotor with 21-ct gold oscillation weight and Glashütte stripe finish
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, panorama date, flying tourbillon
Power reserve: 48 hours
Case material: 18-carat Rose gold
Bezel material: Matches case
Crown material: Matches case
Case shape: Cushion
Bezel shape: Round
Case size: 41.35 mm x 41.35 mm
Lug width: No data
Case height: 13.40 mm
Dial: Galvanized silver
Hands: Rose gold, luminous
Water resistance: 30 meters
Strap: Black Louisiana Alligator leather strap
Crystal: Sapphire, antireflective on both sides
Case back: Sapphire