These 6 stunning tourbillon watches command more than a second look
Designed to fight the effects of gravity, the tourbillon exerts a pull that's near-impossible to resist.
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No doubt about it – Blancpain’s Villeret Tourbillon Volant Une Minute 12 Jours puts the tourbillon at the centre of things. It takes pride of place at 12 o’clock, and there is little to distract from it, with the watch’s white enamel dial, accented only by refined Roman numerals and skeletonised leaf hands. It’s perfect for fans of high horology that’s low-maintenance – the automatic timepiece has an impressive 12-day power reserve.
The apex of IWC’s recently refreshed Da Vinci collection, the Da Vinci Tourbillon Retrograde Chronograph brings together a combination of features that’s new to the brand: a hacking flying tourbillon (which means the tourbillon can be stopped for time-setting), a flyback chronograph and a retrograde date display. The 44mm red gold watch is powered by an automatic movement with efficiency-boosting diamond-coated silicon escapement parts.
Opposites attract, and the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Tourbillon Extra-Thin is a study in horological yinyang with its combination of lightweight titanium (case, main bracelet) and desirably weighty platinum (bezel, bracelet middle links). The 41mm watch also balances out its bold form with a slim profile – it has a thickness of just 8.95mm.
A. Lange & Sohne’s 1815 Tourbillon – shown here in pink gold – has an understated appearance belying its highly technical features. The tourbillon of this 39.5mm timepiece goes beyond your average whirlwind (what the term “tourbillon” means in French) regulator – it’s a hacking tourbillon with a zeroreset seconds hand. This means that the tourbillon can be stopped and the seconds hand can be moved back to zero, for greater precision when setting time.
The Bulgari Roma model – distinguished by a round bezel inscribed with the brand’s name – is more than 40 years old now, and its presence remains as striking as ever. A flying tourbillon elevates the Bulgari Roma Finissimo Tourbillon, which is one of the slimmest watches of its kind, with a movement that’s just 1.95mm thick. Diameter-wise, this pink gold timepiece measures a more standard 41mm.
A FINE EQUILIBRIUM
Handsomely elegant in a bold 40mm cushion-shaped pink gold case, the Drive de Cartier Flying Tourbillon Roman is powered by a manually wound manufacture movement. Bearing the Geneva Seal of quality, the watch features Cartier’s distinctive outsize Roman numerals, sword-shaped hands, guilloche dial, and a tourbillon with a C-shaped carriage that also indicates the seconds.