Favre Leuba towards new heights – As part of its rebirth, the brand is now unveiling the Bivouac 9000, a proper tool watch capable of measuring altitudes up to 9,000m above sea level, a real technical feat. We now take closer look at this quite unique offer, with quite a cool look, to say the least.
Following the introduction of the Raider dive watch collection, among which is the Favre Leuba Harpoon, the brand now continues the exploration of professional watches, inspired by past models, by introducing the Bivouac 9000, a watch capable of measuring altitudes with a range of 9,000 meters.
An early 1960s Bivouac – featuring altimeter (up to 3’000m) / barometer, the Bivouac watches are among the most sought after Favre-Leuba vintage models.
With the Bivouac 9000, Favre Leuba confirms its strategy of crafting rugged watches, inspired from the brand’s rich history. Still, these are not mere reproductions of past successes, but new creations built in a modern way, enhanced with contemporary, off-beat design and innovative features.
The Altimeter is certainly a tribute to the original Bivouac, but its performances have been brought to a superlative level, with the internal development of the mechanism and modern solutions for the membrane to measure air-pressure.
The large red center hand allows to display altitudes of 3,000m per full rotation, allowing for precise measurement. The subsidiary dial is used to keep track of altitudes for up to 9,000m, with the “death zone” enlightened in red (the death zone, in mountaineering, refers to altitudes above a certain point where there is not enough oxygen).
The heart of the barometer is an airtight capsule made from a special alloy. The capsule expands when the air pressure drops as the wearer climbs, and contracts when the air pressure rises during the descent. The expansion and contraction of the capsule triggers a linear movement, which is then converted into a rotational movement to indicate the altitude. The power reserve indicator (65h) is a useful indication as the movement is hand-wound. The small seconds allows to check that the watch is running.
The 48mm titanium case is massive and designed for optimized performance (altimeter/legibility). It features a rotating bezel to keep track of air pressure changes (for instance if a mountaineer is staying for some time in a given place which also allows to have useful indications on the weather conditions). The design is indeed bold (surely polarizing) and features the signature bridge profile of Favre-Leuba.
A proper tool watch, the Bivouac is water resistant to 30m. This won’t allow you to dive but will protect the watch for rough outdoor activities. This is made possible because the air inlet in the case, which is required for the barometer, is protected by a membrane made from a micro-perforated hydrophobic material. It allows air – but not water or dust particles – to pass through. The membrane for the altimeter is protected under a plate on the side of the case secured by two screws.
The Favre-Leuba Bivouac 9000 is worn on a cool, rugged antelope leather strap matching the color of the case and closed with a pin buckle. Price is CHF 7,500.
The Favre Leuba Bivouac has been one of the great surprises from Baselworld so far and we’ll surely come back on the model after the fair, with an in-depth review. For more information, visit www.favre-leuba.com
Technical specifications – Favre-Leuba Bivouac 9000
- Case: 48 mm diameter x 18.7 mm thick – Titanium case – rotating bezel –sapphire crystal with double-sided antireflective coating – Helium relief valve – screwed and aligned case back – Water resistant to 3 ATM / 30m.
- Movement: mechanical movement with manual winding – 65h power reserve – Functions: hours, minutes, seconds, power reserve indicator, central hand to display altitudes of 3,000 m per full rotation, subdial for displaying altitudes of up to 9,000 m and air pressure in hPa.
- Strap: leather strap with pin buckle.