The 2014 Girard-Perregaux Chrono Hawk Pink Gold (Ref. 49970-34-633-BB6B) sports their traditional, extremely well-balanced look that comes as a successful combination of a good taste and almost unrivaled design skills. While the new timepiece has a number of elements that are a bit too ahem stylized, they somehow manage to be organic when you look at the gadget as a whole. I have a strong suspicion that GP uses some sort of magic to make such beautiful accessories.
The new watch looks like an inverted version of the gorgeous Girard-Perregaux Chrono Hawk Hollywoodland that the Swiss watchmaker has released back in November 2013. While the latter featured a black ceramic case crowned with a machine-brushed rose gold bezel, the new timepiece comes with a rose gold body decorated with black ceramic bezel. Thank God, they have managed to keep the chronograph push-pieces, the crown guards and the crown itself still crafted from scratch-resistant ceramic material.
According to official specs, the new millionaire’s gadget is powered by a different movement (instead of the Caliber GP03300-0073 that powered the Hawk Hollywoodland, they now use Caliber GP03300-0076), but I have an impression that the only difference between the two is the way it is decorated (and I must admit that the level of decor on the cal. x-0076 makes a strong impression although it is done by a complex machine, not by a skilled hand of an artisan).
I especially like the arrow-shaped oscillating weight of the winding rotor that is crafted from steel, although I would prefer the common metal to be replaced with something more exciting, like, say, tungsten or maybe even platinum.
Truth be told, I am not terribly impressed with the extent that they used the circular-graining technique to decorate the base plate of the mechanism. While in most affordable watches the pattern looks completely okay, it looks, well, cheesy when it comes to such expensive timekeepers like this Chrono Hawk Pink Gold.
I mean, for the price premium that they want you to pay for this timekeeper, they would better not cut corners in such a blatant fashion. For the price, they have to do better than this. Even the common Geneva Stripes would not be enough to justify the extra money that they charge for this (otherwise overwhelmingly gorgeous) timekeeper.
If you experience a certain sense of deja vu regarding the black dial of the gadget, it is absolutely normal, no need to call a doctor. The motif on the black dial is actually supposed to be familiar since the hexagonal pattern, as it is reported in their press release, was inspired by their well-known Tourbillon Bridge design. Although I find the statement a little bit, um, stretched, I must admit that the dial indeed looks quite cool perfectly matching the shape of rose gold hour markers and broad sword-shaped hands (also crafted from 18-karat rose gold and covered with a thick layer of Superluminova) and making a nice, dynamic impression.
At 44 mm in diameter, the gadget is a bit too large to my taste, but I am sure that most people will love the way it sits on their wrists.
What can I say more? Despite some minor flaws and miserable attempts at cost cutting, this is one of the most interesting chronographs on the market. Sporty and elegant at the same time, the watch is versatile and worth almost every penny that the Swiss-based brand plans to charge you. The question is: are you ready for such a gorgeous time measuring device?
Build quality: 5/5
Value for money: 4/5
Girard-Perregaux Chrono Hawk Pink Gold (Ref. 49970-34-633-BB6B) specification
Price: $29,000 (MSRP)
Movement: Automatic, Caliber GP03300-0076, in-house, Swiss Made
Number of jewels: 61
Movement frequency: 28,800 vph
Power reserve: 46 hours
Movement decoration: Geneva Stripes, perlage, skeletonized oscillating weight with GP logo
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, date, chronograph
Case: Rose gold
Bezel and Crown: Black matte ceramic
Bezel shape: Round
Case size: 44.00 mm
Hour markers: Rose gold, luminous
Hands: Rose gold, luminous
Water resistance: 100 meters
Strap: Black alligator leather strap with a rubber base and black folding buckle
Crystal: Sapphire, antireflective