The Tourbillon with Three Flying Bridges-Aston Martin Edition is the first product of the two brands’ team that was announced last February.
Last February, Swiss watchmaker Girard-Perregaux and British luxury sports car company Aston Martin announced the start of a partnership. Four months later, they reveal the first product of that team up: the Tourbillon with Three Flying Bridges-Aston Martin Edition.
“We are delighted to partner with Aston Martin, entrusting their team with arguably our most iconic timepiece, delivering a fresh perspective on Haute Horlogerie,” Girard-Perregaux CEO Patrick Pruniaux says, adding that they rarely do they work with others to reinterpret their flagship edition Three Bridges, which they first released in 1867.
“However, on this occasion, we have made an exception, mindful of Aston Martin’s prowess for design,” he says.
History of excellence
Both brands have a long heritage of craftsmanship. Girard-Perregaux, which was founded by Jean-François Bautte and is headquarted in La Chaux-de-Fonds, has been creating timepieces since 1791. Lionel Martin and Robert Bamford’s automotive company, meanwhile, was launched in 1913.
Their collaboration is inspired by the Three Bridges pocket watch, which was popular back in the 19th century. But this edition, of course, features a contemporary take on a classic form, with black calf leather and Rubber Alloy, which is injected with white gold. The strap’s evokes the design of past Aston Martin racing cars.
Its 44 millimetre case is formed of strong yet lightweight hypoallergenic alloy Grade 5 titanium, and suffused with black Diamond-Like Carbon. A sapphire crystal element is seen both up front and at the rear of the case.
Three bridges, which is a signature of the Swiss watchmaker, span the dial and are formed of titanium with black Physical Vapour Deposition treatment and polished angles. The case’s open design also confidently allows a view of the piece’s engineering and movement.
But why is the term “flying” significant in its name? Well, the watch’s movement is pared back, making it seem as if the main plate has disappeared, and giving it the illusion of levitation.
“Good design is good design”
Positioned in the lower portion of the dial, the watch’s cage is lyre-shaped, a trait that Girard-Perregaux has used since the 19th century. Measuring just 10mm in diameter, the cage is composed of 79 components that weigh only 0.25 grams together.
Aston Martin is engraved on the micro-rotor’s vertical flank, and filled with a luminescent treatment that shines blue in restricted light. The watch’s indexes and hands are also treated similarly.
“When viewing the design of an Aston Martin, you will note the firm’s distinctive front grille, first seen on the DB Mark III of the late 50s,” Pruniaux explains. “Likewise, the scoops and side strakes found on the company’s modern-day models are functional elements, intended to improve airflow while enriching the overall appearance of each car.”
Marek Reichman, Aston Martin executive vice president and chief creative officer adds that the biggest challenges in the design of the watch was related to scale.
“We had to consider lines and proportion on a far smaller scale than we are used to in the realm of automotive design. That said, good design is good design, whether it is a watch or a car, the principles remain the same,” he says. “I’m delighted with the finished watch and congratulate everyone who worked on this project as this collaboration has produced a timepiece of great beauty.”
The Tourbillon with Three Flying Bridges-Aston Martin Edition, a limited edition of 18 pieces, is immediately available worldwide in all authorized Girard-Perregaux retailers.