Summer is here, and the prospect of travelling to different places beckons. The ideal watch to keep up with time zone changes is a GMT or dual time that displays two time zones simultaneously. Like other complications in the brand’s inventory, Laurent Ferrier‘s Classic Traveller complication is easy to use. It stands out from many GMTs with its elegant, rounded curves, unmistakable LF minimalism and gorgeous micro-rotor movement. Meteorite dials are all the rage these days, and the latest Classic Traveller features a dark blue meteorite dial. Following the destination of the Square Micro-Rotor California and the Galet Traveller Enamel, the 15 pieces of this meteorite version of the Classic Traveller Meteorite will be sold exclusively in the US.
Laurent Ferrier’s Classic Traveller was launched in 2013 – then referred to as the Galet Traveller – and featured two horizontally aligned windows for the date at 3 and second time zone or home time at 9 o’clock with pushers on the left side of the case. We were recently treated to a beautiful magnetic green dial version of the GMT watch that sold out in record time. The layout and functionality of this Classic Traveller Meteorite are identical, but the dial is now made of meteorite.
The idea of using a slice of meteorite for the dial was inspired by the fact that meteorites are hardy travellers, journeying through space and time before colliding with our planet. The meteorite used for the dial is a fragment of Muonionalusta, a space rock that struck northern Scandinavia about 1 million BCE. The iron meteorite, regarded as one of the oldest known meteorites, was originally a dark grey colour. The deep metallic blue colour of the dial is obtained by placing the fragment in a galvanic bath; a white silkscreen print has been placed on top of the meteorite to enhance its natural motifs.
In a departure from other Traveller models, the indices are not applied to the dial but printed in white and shaped like an elongated Roman numeral I with double II at noon. The small seconds counter at 6 o’clock is slightly recessed and indicated with white printed markings. To match the markings on the dial, the signature Laurent Ferrier Assegai-shaped hour and minute hands and the baton seconds hand are made of 18k white gold and coated in white. Given Mr Ferrier’s penchant for symmetry, the bevelled home time aperture at 9 o’clock is corresponded by the bevelled date aperture at 3 o’clock, both with white backgrounds and black numerals.
The 41mm titanium case has a thickness of 12.64mm, including the sapphire crystals protecting the dial and caseback. The smooth, river-worn pebble surface is enhanced with a gleaming polish, and the signature ball-shaped crown adds a classic touch.
The last thing a traveller needs is a watch that is difficult to set. Laurent Ferrier ensures a smooth ride by incorporating two oblong push pieces into the left side of the case to adjust the central hour hand, indicating local time without moving the minute hand. By pressing the top pusher, the central hand advances forwards in one-hour jumps, while the lower pusher produces an inverse jump. In addition to the rapid local time adjustment, the date module is attached to local time and automatically changes when the hand passes midnight, adapting to travel between different time zones. To distinguish between night and day, the home time aperture has a 24-hour display.
The view from the caseback is a true horological treat with a fully integrated GMT module with date and an 18k gold off-centred micro-rotor designed in collaboration with La Fabrique du Temps. Since a micro-rotor requires more rotations than a full rotor, Laurent Ferrier has created a more efficient escapement with a double direct impulse on the balance. The beautifully designed bridges and the level of finishings are impressive: Côtes de Genève on the bridges, circular graining on the mainplate, bevelled edges, mirror-polished steel elements, hand-chamfered interior angles and a guilloché pattern on the rotor. The LF230.02 automatic calibre beats at 21,600vph and delivers a power reserve of 72 hours.
Availability & Price
The hand-stitched strap, which is made from cork, matches the colour of the dial and is fitted with a titanium pin buckle. As mentioned, the Classic Traveller Meteorite is limited to 15 pieces and will be sold exclusively in the US. No retail price has been given, but it should be around CHF 65,000 (excl. tax).
For more information, please consult Laruentferrier.ch.