The introduction of the Octa calibre in 2001 was a milestone for F.P. Journe. With it, the independent watchmaker introduced a self-winding movement with an impressive 160-hour power reserve. Over the past 20 years, only three updates have been brought to the movement. The latest consisting in modifying the winding mechanism, opting for unidirectional winding, to improve its efficiency. F.P. Journe now celebrates this quintessential movement with an exhibition in Geneva and with the 99-piece platinum limited edition F.P. Journe Octa Automatique 20th Anniversary – a tribute to the 2001 Octa, with a 40mm platinum case, a brass rhodium-plated movement and a satin-finished yellow gold dial…
In 2001, F.P. Journe, which only had hand-wound movements in its collection so far, decided to add the comfort of self-winding, with the Octa calibre, giving its name to the new collection to come… the F.P. Journe Octa. Housed in a 38mm case, presented with the brand’s classic matte gold dial with off-centred silver guilloché sub-dials, it was mostly important for its impressively powerful movement, with a 160-hour power reserve. One of the earliest models in this collection was the Octa Réserve de Marche, of power reserve in English, with an additional grande date – as you can see above.
To celebrate the 20th anniversary of the self-winding collection, F.P.Journe presents the Automatique in a limited series of 99 pieces, with a clear nostalgic feel. Visually, this watch is a clear “back to the roots” model, with its case made of polished 950 platinum, even though slightly enlarged at 40mm. But where the tribute is even more obvious, it’s by looking at the dial… and the movement too, with something long-time fans of the brand will certainly appreciate.
The dial of the F.P. Journe Octa Automatique 20th Anniversary is made of matte, satin-finished yellow gold, with a grained effect – something that clearly refers to Journe’s earliest watches. On top of this warm base-plated, there’s a classic silver guilloché sub-dial module, with off-centred hours and minutes and a small seconds. All the hands are traditional in shape, as well as in execution, being made of blued steel. The display module is also classically framed by a steel ring, a signature element of early watches by Journe. The numerals of the hour and minute dial, if still using the brand’s distinctive font, have also been enlarged.
In addition to the three classic indications, this F.P. Journe Octa Automatique 20th Anniversary features a power reserve indication, has been moved down slightly to leave more space for the enlarged date, displayed in a window now measuring 4.7mm x 2.6mm for easier legibility. The look is both traditional and unique, with this style that made F.P. Journe watches popular in the early days of his work… Undeniably charming and appealing.
Turning the watch over and you’ll discover a reworked Octa calibre… And one that is not made with solid gold plates and bridges – as it is the case for all modern F.P. Journe movements – but that is using classic brass as a material, later rhodium-plated. And that is certainly a nice tribute to the first Octa watches. The movement, calibre 1300.3, is also bringing its lot of updates compared to the existing Octa calibre. If the base is the same, it is now decorated with openwork bridges. For the rest, it is the same powerful architecture with a 160-hour power reserve – which is limited to 120h for stability reasons. This 3Hz movement is finely equipped, with a unidirectional automatic winding in 22k gold, with guilloché finish and a free-sprung balance with four adjustable inertia weights. The decoration is typical Journe, with graining on the base plate, circular Côtes de Genève, golden engravings, polished screw heads with chamfered slots, hand-polished steel components and chamfered edges on the bridges.
This new F.P. Journe Octa Automatique 20th Anniversary will be a limited edition of 99 pieces, available at the 10 F.P.Journe Boutiques and Espaces. The brand also indicates that the updated Automatique will later join the current collection with a 40mm or 42 mm case in platinum or 18k 6N gold, and a dial in gold and guilloché silver, yet without the brass movement.
The price will be CHF 56,000 (excl. taxes). More details on www.fpjourne.com.