Basel 2010 marks the 275th year since Jehan-Jacques Blancpain declared his profession as a watchmaker on the village rolls of Villeret. Three announcements headline Blancpain’s celebration of this important anniversary: a new grand complication, Carrousel Répétition Minutes Le Brassus, with the world’s first carrousel powered cathedral gong minute repeater movement ; a new Villeret collection reinterpreting the look of Blancpain’s most traditional and understated line ; and a new complicated addition to the L-evolution Collection featuring a week of the year indication.
The Le Brassus grand complication builds upon Blancpain’s exclusive flying one minute carrousel which debuted two years ago and which established a host of world firsts. Only a very few watch brands are capable of producing a 100% in house minute repeater movement. Blancpain stands completely alone in having developed not only an entirely new cathedral gong minute repeater mechanism, but marrying it with its one minute flying carrousel. In the creation of this pioneering movement, Blancpain has created several key innovations for the repeater, including a system for fixing the cathedral gong rings to the inside of the case to produce extraordinary sound and a system which fully protects the movement from damage if the crown is turned while the repeater is running. As befits such a complicated movement, the red gold movement bridges and mainplate are individually hand engraved.
The new Villeret Collection distils aesthetics and complications that have been at Blancpain’s core since the early 1980s and brings them to the forefront backed by the technical advances which are the product of Blancpain’s heavy investment in movement development over the past several years. The Villeret Collection is Blancpain’s most traditional and classic, featuring the signature double stepped case and classic dials. All of these elements are featured in the new models, subtly reinterpreted but instantly recognizable as Blancpain.
The signature complication for the Villeret Collection for almost 30 years has been the complete calendar moon phase and several variants of this complication will be offered, including models using Blancpain’s exclusive 66R9 8-day power reserve automatic movement. The new collection will also offer a range of manual and automatic timepieces, with the summit occupied by an 8 day power reserve manual wind wristwatch utilizing Blancpain’s exclusive in-house 13R0 movement.
The L-evolution collection is now enriched with a Semainier model, driven by an automatic winding 8-day power reserve movement offering a week of the year indication along with a large date display.