By Teresa Greco
Hublot’s latest watch, Spirit of Big Bang Meca-10, fuses two of its most famous lines creating a dream alliance. Reworking its famous Meca-10 factory calibre with a 10-day power reserve, Hublot has combined it with the “barrel” design of its emblematic Spirit of Big Bang to create the newly released Spirit of Big Bang Meca-10.
Presented at LVMH Watch Week, held Jan. 13-15 in Dubai, the timepiece was among a slew of watches Hublot unveiled to members of the international watch media. Ricardo Guadalupe, CEO Hublot, explains, “As the first fusion between our popular Meca-10 calibre manufacture and the iconic Spirit of Big Bang design, this new watch—with an extraordinary power reserve of 10 days that is displayed in an innovative way—completes a collection that is gaining importance at Hublot.”
Although Hublot was founded in 1980, it wasn’t until the 2005 release of its ground-breaking Big Bang that the watchmaker established its reputation for mixing modern materials with traditional horological craftsmanship. Mostly known for its luxury sports watches with shaped cases and integrated straps, Hublot’s newest timepiece has the brains of the Meca-10 manual-winding factory caliber and the barrel-shaped body of the Spirit of Big Bang 45 mm collection that required some important adaptations on the movement to make it shaped just like the case of this watch. The watchmakers were “tasked with revising the whole construction of the movement so that it would fit in the new space available as efficiently as possible from a technical aspect,” says Guadalupe.
Hublot’s mechanical movements are almost always visible through transparent dials and casebacks, this model’s skeletonized dial features a number of unconventional elements. Making the power reserve indicator the central piece of this watch, there are two racks at 12 o’clock that slide on a line between 9 o’clock and 3 o’clock with an innovative new rack and pinion, as well as an opening at 3 o’clock that indicates the number of days left on the power reserve. The new HUB1233 calibre retains the basic principles of the manual-winding skeleton Meca-10 factory movement, with its parallel twin barrel and exceptional 10-day power reserve displayed in an unusual way. The central display of the hours and minutes is completed by a small second hand at 9 o’clock, next to the balance and the hairspring that keeps time with total precision. The construction of the case also boasts its identity with an innovative “sandwich” principle that makes it possible to vary and blend an infinite number of materials. Aesthetically speaking, the movement’s contrasting finishes—satin and polished surfaces framed against parts with blackened finishes—adds a level of depth and sophistication to what’s already a very progressive-looking timepiece. Guadalupe adds, ““Because with a manual winding movement, if you only have two days of power reserve, it’s not enough. When you have 10 days, it’s more acceptable and the design of the movement brings something to the watch, so it’s not only about the case but also the movement that brings new value.”
Hublot designs particularly audacious timepieces – most of them with a highly-developed sporting aspect – and characterizes itself through the “Art of Fusion” philosophy, bringing tradition into the future. The Spirit of Big Bang Meca-10 is available in three versions – titanium, black ceramic and the exclusive King Gold alloy – with the famous rubber strap that Hublot was the first brand to combine with the gleam of gold. The titanium model retails for $23,100 US; an 18k King Gold model, made of an alloy combining gold and platinum that offers a new red-gold colour, retails for $44,100 US; and a Black Magic model composed of high-tech black ceramic, a material of the future that is mastered only by Hublot, retails for $27,300 US.