AN ORIG­I­NAL UP­DATE

TIME The rad­i­cal move­ment that made Parmi­giani’s Bu­gatti Type 390 a star has been brought back in a more func­tional and wear­able case.

Robb Report (Malaysia) - - Time - By JAMES D MAL­COLM­SON

In 2004, Parmi­giani Fleurier’s newly un­veiled Bu­gatti Type 370 cre­ated a sen­sa­tion among watch col­lec­tors with its rad­i­cal re­think­ing of move­ment ar­chi­tec­ture. In­stead of wheels and plates ly­ing flat on the wrist, the Type 370 pre­sented a con­struc­tion elon­gated by col­umns that sat trans­versely across the wrist. It looked like a car en­gine, an es­pe­cially apt de­sign for a prod­uct tied to the Vey­ron su­per­car from the re­vived Bu­gatti mar­que. Nev­er­the­less, while the de­sign was revered and pro­duced in lim­ited num­bers for over a decade, it was also tech­ni­cally in­flex­i­ble. Parmi­giani’s engi­neers found they could only com­plete ma­jor de­sign up­dates with a new, some­what more con­ven­tional move­ment and a dial ori­ented at 90 de­grees through con­i­cal gear­ing – a so­lu­tion first shown in 2010’s sin­u­ously curved Su­per Sport.

The lat­est Bu­gatti time­piece from Parmi­giani, the Bu­gatti Type 390 brings back the trans­verse move­ment ar­chi­tec­ture in a more modern and adapt­able pack­age. Housed in a cylin­der, the move­ment stacks a fly­ing tour­bil­lon at one end fol­lowed by a go­ing train in plan­e­tary gears, two wind­ing bar­rels and a con­i­cal-geared power-re­serve in­di­ca­tor at the op­po­site end. Time in­di­ca­tion is on a per­pen­dic­u­lar plane from the cylin­der, with the power trans­mis­sion per­formed by a col­umn of worm gear­ing (the ac­tion is a lit­tle like a spin­ning corkscrew). In fact, the whole case ar­tic­u­lates around the move­ment, adding com­fort for the wearer and, ac­cord­ing to the com­pany, tak­ing a di­rect cue from the car.

“The en­gine in the Bu­gatti is at­tached to the cock­pit in the cen­tre of the car, and the two rear wheels are sup­ported by the en­gine it­self,” says Florin Niculescu, vice pres­i­dent of prod­uct de­vel­op­ment at Parmi­giani Fleurier. “We wanted to mount the move­ment in a sim­i­lar man­ner.”

Also like the car, the watch is pro­duced to the spec­i­fi­ca­tions of the owner in dif­fer­ent com­bi­na­tions of colours and ma­te­ri­als. But more im­por­tantly, the move­ment pack­age is de­signed to al­low far greater cre­ative li­cence in forth­com­ing ver­sions. “The 390 opens a new di­men­sion for the fu­ture,” says Niculescu, “be­cause I can put the move­ment wher­ever I want around the wrist, pick up the en­ergy and use it for any type of time dis­play.” www.parmi­giani. ch ≠

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