Introducing The Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin Tourbillon Ref. Q13224E1 Watch

Jaeger-LeCoultre's newest tourbillon watch is (electric) blue.


I think it’s fair to say that Jaeger-LeCoultre had a bit of a wobbly moment about seven years ago; their designs seemed to lose their splendour and detail. Over the last three years or so, however, they’ve been storming back to the forefront of haute horlogerie, and the watch world is so much better for it. The latest addition to their collection is the new Master Ultra Thin Tourbillon ref Q13224E1, which now comes in blue.

Blue might seem to be like it’s on its way out in terms of fashionable colours as green is coming on strong at the moment. However, I don’t think blue needs to disappear entirely, and Jaeger-LeCoultre’s blues on its watches are some of my favourites. The alligator leather strap is blue, and that matches the blue dial; the straight lines exploding out from the centre are attractive, as are the applied numerals, logo and polished dauphine hands.

The piece itself is simple in its functions. It has the time including seconds, which are displayed via the tourbillon, and there is also a date indicator in the form of the 12 O’clock subdial. The tourbillon is visible through the dial and also the caseback and provides a pleasing addition to the piece. One can argue about the functionality of a tourbillon in a modern wristwatch, but it’s hard to argue with the pleasure of seeing one in person.

The tourbillon is a part of the self-winding calibre 978. Jaeger-LeCoultre has had a reputation for centuries as “the watchmaker’s watchmaker”; they’re the one you go to when you want to put a very high-quality movement in your watch. Many high-end watch companies have done this, as well, but it’s mostly Jaeger-LeCoultre watches that benefit the most from their movements these days. The calibre 978 has a 45-hour power reserve and is made of 271 components, it’s also thin at just 6.5mm thick.

That thickness adds to this watch’s overall dimensions which are 40mm x 12.13mm, the 18k pink gold case will slide easily underneath the cuff. For those interested, the water resistance is 50m, although I don’t know who’s going to be trying to swim with one of these. They might have an expensive repair bill, too, as the retail price of this is €120,000. Thankfully, it’s not a limited edition like nearly every other watch is these days, but the price is quite prohibitive anyway.