By John Galt
Cartier will be officially releasing this absolutely gorgeous piece next month at SIHH, called the Rotonde de Cartier Astrotourbillon skeleton calibre 9461MC. Yes I know it’s a mouthful but just look at it, Cartier’s fine watchmaking division have really come out with all guns blazing and skeletonized this to the absolute max with only roman numerals at 12 & 6 and small bar at 3 holding the movement. The large 47mm case is made of 18ct white gold with their iconic beaded crown with blue sapphire insert and gorgeous blue hands that seem to hover over the movement.
Traditional tourbillons rotate around their own axis but this is not a traditional tourbillon, this is an Astrotourbillon, meaning it is centrally mounted and rotates around the entire movement once a minute. I could watch it for hours gliding round the dial seemingly floating in the air. The small mechanical calibre MC9461 is hand-wound and has been open worked to the maximum and when fully wound has a 48 hour power reserve.
The reverse side is just as stunning with the bridges visible and echoing the shape of the silver main plate but with a slightly darker look to them due to them being in titanium.
The piece is limited to 100 pieces in white gold with retail likely to be in the region of 120,000 euros. If you desire the piece with a baguette diamond bezel and case in platinum limited to just 20 pieces it’s yours for 420,000 euros. Why not go full diamonds and add a bracelet covered entirely of diamonds limited to 5 pieces for a cool 1.3 million euros.
I could watch the movement for hours. This really is haute horology, would I own one for the rumoured price? I’m not sure, will they sell all of the limited pieces including the 5 all diamond versions? I’m sure they will. For more info, please visit cartier.com
John Galt – Contributing Editor
John Galt caught the horology bug 4 years ago on his first visit to a London watch show and has snowballed since; John has become an avid writer and blogger of timepieces of all kinds, from everyday timepieces to modern Luxury Haute Horology, his favorite brands being HYT and Greubel Forsey that push the bounders of modern watch-making. John keeps a keen interest in the UK watch scene with their many emerging brands and timepiece’s. John Galt currently contributes watch related articles for online publications in the UK and USA. You can follow John on Twitter @johng73 Read his articles here.