BY HARLAN CHAPMAN-GREEN
As you know, Only Watch is upon us. Once every two years, manufacturers of fine wristwatches produce a one-off piece that goes to auction at Christie’s in Geneva. The funds generated from the sale go towards researching Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD), one of the most numerous and dangerous forms of muscular dystrophy. Breguet has been doing its part for years now, and 2021 is no different.
Breguet is an extremely historic brand with a high level of importance to the world of watches today. It’s the originator of many things, including the tourbillon and the original wristwatch itself. In the 1950s, it was a manufacturer of tool watches for pilots, and the Type XX range is the modern-day product of that history. This new one, however, goes way back to the roots of the brand. Its dial, with only two subdials and brown colouration, is extremely simple and legible, very similar to the original Type 20 watches.
History is more than just skin deep with this watch. Inside the 38.3mm diameter case is a Valjoux calibre 235, which was made sometime in the 1970s and is based on the Valjoux 222 movement, the original movement of the Type 20 watches. It features a column-wheel flyback chronograph, a 3Hz beat rate and a power reserve of 45 hours. It’s also manually wound, and on the face of it, the specifications aren’t far off the modern movements we see in the watches of today. The estimate for this watch is between CHF35,000 and CHF50,000. However, Breguet tends to outperform their expectations.
There’s one other thing with this watch. Breguet tends to use Only Watch as a way to demonstrate what’s coming soon in their model range. There’s been speculation for a while that the Type XX is being updated, and because the watch has disappeared from Breguet’s website, there is a possibility that this could be what the new Type XX looks like.
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