Earlier this year Arnold & Son introduced the UTTE, which stands for Ultra-Thin Tourbillon Escapement. The UTTE has a movement that is just 2.97 mm thick and a case thickness of only 8.34 mm, making the UTTE one of the thinnest tourbillion watches on the market. Now they come with a Limited Edition of 8 pieces for Asprey in London.
If you were wondering if Piaget didn’t serve something thinner, than I must disappoint you. Their Gouverneur Tourbillon (click here) used to be the world’s thinnest shaped tourbillon, however in all fairness, it also incorporates a moon phase indication as well. That’s quite an accomplishment for Arnold & Son and the UTTE is a rather interesting offering. It was already available in a similar classic shaped red gold or palladium case, measuring 42 mm in diameter. The special hand guilloche dial on this Asprey Special Edition of just 8 pieces adds that “something extra”.
The hand guilloche dial is however more expensive and would set you back € 63.000 Euro (including taxes), while the normal palladium model costs € 54.500 Euro. That means € 8.500 extra for the hand guilloche dial and engravings in the case back, and of course the knowledge that it is one of just eight pieces!
The manually wound movement, which features a one-minute flying tourbillon, is crafted in nickel-silverthat is NAC grey treated. It features manually chamfered bridges with polished edges, fine circular graining and Côtes de Genève, screws with bevelled and mirror-polished heads. In short, all Haute Horlogerie finishing that we expect in this price range. The tourbillon cage is satin-finish with chamfered and polished edges.
The movement’s diameter is rather large, measuring 32 mm, but also allows enough place for the large tourbillon cage that measures a massive 14 mm in diameter and thus occupies almost half of the movement space. The flying tourbillon cage is not inset into the caliber, but instead rises out of the movement, through the dial, to the same height as the hour and minute hands. All visible screws of the spherical tourbillon cage have been removed to get beautifully balanced looks. The only visible screws are on the regulator.
The large diameter of the movement also makes it possible to find enough space for two main spring barrels, which deliver a power reserve of at least 90 hours.
Whether the UTTE is the world’s thinnest tourbillon watch we don’t know for sure, but it sure looks like it, now it pushed the Piaget Gouverneur Tourbillon from it’s leading position.
The tourbillon escapement has always been attributed to Abraham-Louis Breguet, however the English watchmaker John Arnold had a role in this as well! The exceptional watchmaker John Arnold was an active participant in one of the most extraordinary partnerships in the creation of the tourbillon. Both he and Abraham-Louis Breguet worked closely together, sharing both their knowledge and passion. Evidence of their partnership is A.-L. Breguet’s first-ever tourbillon escapement mounted in John Arnold’s No.11 movement – a watch that can be found today in London’s British Museum.
Main Technical Characteristics:
- Calibre A&S8200 – Exclusive Arnold & Son ultra-thin mechanical movement, one-minute flying tourbillon, hand-wound, 29 jewels, diameter 32 mm, thickness 2.97 mm, tourbillon cage diameter 14mm, power reserve over 90 hours, 21’600 vibrations/h
- Functions: hours, minutes, tourbillon
- Movement decoration: nickel-silver movement, NAC grey treated with Haute Horlogerie finishing: manually chamfered bridges with polished edges, fine circular graining and Côtes de Genève, screws with bevelled and mirror-polished heads. Tourbillon cage: satin-finish with chamfered and polished edges.
- Dial: silvery-white and silvery opaline hand guilloché
- Case: palladium, diameter 42 mm, cambered sapphire with anti-reflective coating on both sides, case back see-through sapphire, water-resistant to 30 m
- Strap: hand-stitched black alligator leather
- Limited edition: 8 timepieces
Retail prices (VAT incl.) for both the UTTE in red gold and the UTTE Asprey Special Edition Limited Edition of 8 pieces, is € 63.000 Euro. The normal palladium version comes at a retail price of € 54.500 Euro. More information can be found on the Arnold & Son website.