This Frederique Constant Classic Tourbillon Meteorite Manufacture has their first-ever entirely hand-decorated movementZach Blass
- The new Frederique Constant Classic Tourbillon Meteorite Manufacture is the most decorated watch in their history.
- The 35 watches have entirely hand-decorated movements that include chamfering, hammering, graining, black polishing, and more.
- Priced at US$44,995 – high within Frederique Constant, but far lower than what other brands would charge for this level of quality.
Frederique Constant is celebrating the 15th anniversary of their in-house tourbillon calibre: the FC-980. With an anniversary, of course, comes an obligatory special release. But, two watchmakers within Frederique Constant wanted to go above and beyond and create a tribute they felt would be befitting of such a milestone. Sure, a precious metal case and a meteorite dial could be considered enough for an anniversary release. Instead, Frederique Constant watchmakers Romain Valette and Roland Pel approached their CEO Neils Eggerding with a first-ever concept for the brand. The pair would work extra hours to create a 35-piece limited edition series of their tourbillon watch, but, for the first time in the brand’s history, with a fully hand-decorated movement. This watch is the new Frederique Constant Classic Tourbillon Meteorite Manufacture.
It was also Valette and Pel’s idea to go for a more monochromatic aesthetic, pairing a 39mm platinum case with a Gibeon meteorite dial – each dial naturally subtly different making each watch, in a way, a piece unique. By opting for a more monochromatic look, with grey hues throughout, this would allow all the hand-decorations they would perform on each watch to shine through much more. Looking at the in-house automatic FC-980, you can immediately see how the hands of Vallete and Pel have completely elevated the calibre. Technically speaking, it remains structurally and functionally identical with a 4hz silicon escapement. Aesthetically, however, you can see the refined grained, chamfered, and hammered finishes with even the screws black-polished by hand.
The challenge with the offering at the end of the day is the fact that, as a first-ever, this level of decoration, exclusivity, and pricing is unheard of for Freqrique Constant. Much of their offerings draw the attention of watch enthusiasts due to the value they offer at more entry-luxury pricing. The Frederique Constant Classic Tourbillon Meteorite Manufacture is priced at US$44,995, a much higher price point than people are accustomed to with the brand. But, here is what you need to consider. The Classic Tourbillon Manufacture is priced at US$15,695 in steel, and US$27,995 in rose gold. While both are also higher in price for the brand, compared to other brands with a similar offering it is vastly less expensive. The same could be said for this new Frederique Constant Classic Tourbillon Meteorite Manufacture limited edition. Were another high-end Swiss brand name on the dial, the price would be set in the six-figures at least. US$44,495 is certainly a lot of money, but, in Frederique Constant fashion, you are getting a lot of watch for the money in my opinion.
Frederique Constant Classic Tourbillon Meteorite Manufacture pricing and availability
The Frederique Constant Classic Tourbillon Meteorite Manufacture will be available as a limited edition of 35 pieces in December 2023. Price: US$44,995
|Model||Classic Tourbillon Meteorite Manufacture|
|Case Dimensions||39mm (D) x 10.99mm (T)|
|Case Material||950 platinum|
|Dial||Grey meteorite dial|
|Crystal||Sapphire crystal and exhibition caseback|
|Strap||Black alligator leather strap with matte finishing|
|Movement||In-house automatic FC-980|
|Power Reserve||38 hours|
|Functions||Hours, minutes, 60-second tourbillon|
|Availability||December 2023, Limited to 35 pieces|