The Swiss brand has just disseminated an official press release regarding its upcoming Hublot Classic Fusion Extra-Thin Skeleton (refs. 515.OX.0180.LR and 515.NX.0170.LR) family of watches. Soon to be available both in their proprietary King Gold alloy, as well as in more understated titanium, the watch combines an ultra-thin manufacture-made hand-wound movement with a nicely skeletonized dial. It could have been slightly smaller though.
Being a member of their elegant Classic Fusion family, the new skeletonized timekeeper features a refined, pleasant to the eye design. Its slim body features a nice combination of polished and vertically satin-finished surfaces that make the timekeeper look even lighter than it is.
Although the other members of the family are available both in 42 and 45 millimeter cases, this model (at least, for now) is going to be offered only in a rather large 45 mm case.
I have already seen one of these watches on a normally-sized wrist and I have a feeling that for a dress timekeeper (which it is) the new skeleton is just too big.
I truly hope that they will introduce a smaller version of the model before the end of this year. Judging by the photos that we have received, the movement is compact enough to look great in a slightly reduced body.
As for the movement, the timepiece is powered by their new HUB1300 hand-wound caliber. Developed and manufactured solely in-house, the movement is only 2.90 mm thick and, as the name of the piece implies, has its mainplate expertly skeletonized to show a pattern that somehow reminds me both of the last year’s Audemars Piguet Openworked Extra-Thin Royal Oak Limited Edition 40th Anniversary (Ref. 15203PT.OO.1240PT.01) and a more elegant Piaget Altiplano Skeleton Automatic (ref. G0A37132) that was officially presented last month during the last SIHH 2012 event.
However, I must admit that this particular model looks better than the aforementioned pair. Mainly, thanks to the logic behind the skeletonization pattern that we see here.
It is hard (and possibly useless) to explain, but the movement seems to be skeletonized just in the right places to make the dial of the piece perfectly match the spirit of the whole Classic Fusion family.
As usual, the Swiss watchmaking brand doesn’t specify the timekeeper’s price, but I am sure that it won’t be cheap.
Hublot plans to limit the timekeeper’s production to just 1500 pieces: 1000 pieces in titanium and 500 in King Gold.
Build Quality: 5/5
Overall Legibility: 3/5
Nighttime Legibility: 1/5
Value for Money: 4/5
Overall Rating: 4.5/5
Hublot Classic Fusion Extra-Thin Skeleton in King Gold and Titanium (Refs. 515.OX.0180.LR and 515.NX.0170.LR) hand-wound watch specification
Price: $31,000 (MSRP)
Movement: Manual (hand-wound,) Caliber HUB1300, 2.90 mm thick, in-house, Swiss Made
Number of jewels: 23
Movement frequency: 21,600 vph
Movement decoration: Skeletonized, machine-brushed, blackened
Functions: Hours, minutes, small seconds
Power reserve: 90 hours
Case material: 18-carat King Gold (Ref. 515.OX.0180.LR) / Titanium (Ref. 515.NX.0170.LR)
Bezel material: Matches case
Crown material: Matches case
Case shape: Tonneau
Bezel shape: Round
Case size: 45.00 mm
Case height: No data
Lug width: No data
Dial: Black, skeletonized, covered with sapphire crystal with anti-reflective coating on both sides
Hour markers: Polished and rhodium-plated or red gold-plated
Hands: Polished and rhodium-plated or red gold-plated
Water resistance: 50 meters
Strap: Black alligator strap stitched onto black rubber with deployant buckle in black PVD steel or 18-carat red gold
Crystal: Sapphire, antireflective on both sides
Case back: Sapphire, antireflective on both sides