Presented at Baselworld 2018 – when Jaquet Droz and the rest of the Swatch Group was still exhibiting at the Basel-based fair – the Grande Seconde Skelet-One was a surprisingly modern take on the classic 8-figure on the dial of the watch, the signature design of the brand. Launched in three inaugural versions, two in gold and one in black ceramic with gold accents, the Skelet-One is back for 2019 in an even bolder and more technical edition. Meet the Jaquet Droz Grande Seconde Skelet-One Ceramic Black And Blue.
Released for the 280th-anniversary celebrations of Jaquet Droz, the Grande Seconde Skelet-One was a bold architectural take on the brand’s signature model. For the first time in its recent history, the Grande Seconde was presented with a skeletonized movement and a literal absence of dial – offering an uncluttered view of the mechanics with aerial bridges.
This modern take on the Grande Seconde remains unmistakably Jaquet Droz but brings other sources of inspiration to a brand that usually stays on the classic side of things. While the traditional Grande Seconde watches play on purity and large dials with few indications, this openworked model is bolder and more complex.
Yet, the basics haven’t been forgotten and the iconic 8-shape on the dial is still present – and in fact, emphasized by the construction of the movement itself. The hours and minutes counter at 12 o’clock is intertwined with the large seconds counter at 6 o’clock. The large seconds sapphire sub-dial perfectly complements the skeletonized movement. At 12 o’clock, the sapphire hour ring is set on a base of gold. On this ceramic model, hours are indicated by applied and facetted indexes (Roman numerals on the gold models). The mainplate of the movement has been designed to follow the shape of the 8 on the dial.
For 2019, the black-on-gold model is now complemented by a new version, still crafted in black ceramic and with a 41.5mm case, in which all the golden elements have been replaced by blue accents or rhodium-plated parts. This version feels even more modern and more technical than before.
Powering the Jaquet Droz Grande Seconde Skelet-One is the automatic calibre JD2663.SQ, a twin-barrel movement that has been entirely openworked. It features a silicon balance spring, silicon pallet horns and a JD personalized balance with external screws. The 18k white gold central rotor is skeletonized as well and is engraved with the individual number of the watch. Ticking at 28,800 vibrations per hour (4Hz), it offers a comfortable power reserve of 68 hours. The movement bridges and plates are coated with a black ‘NAC’ treatment.
The Jaquet Droz Grande Seconde Skelet-One Ceramic Black and Blue won’t be a limited edition. Its price isn’t confirmed yet but expect something similar to the 2018 ceramic model, meaning CHF 24,850. More details at www.jaquet-droz.com.