Piaget proves again that thin is definitely in.
It presented two record-breaking timepieces that pushed the limits of thinness – the Altiplano Ultimate Concept and the Altiplano Ultimate Automatic 910P.
“Piaget has never done records for the sake of records,” says Chabi Nouri, CEO of Piaget. “We always did it to push the boundaries of creativity.”
The Altiplano Ultimate Concept is only 2mm thick, making it the world’s thinnest mechanical hand-wound watch. The result of four years of research and development, the watch is impressive. The 41mm timepiece is driven by a new calibre, the 900P-UC, and comes with 44 hours of power reserve. It only weighs 21.7g.
To achieve this level of thinness, Piaget had to re-engineer the way the calibre and the dial fit together inside the case, resulting in the filing of five patents. The regulating organ at 9 o’clock was redesigned: the balance wheel bridge is gone. Instead, the balance-staff, inner ring of the ball-bearing mechanism and the roller become fused into one piece.
A new barrel was designed and placed at 6 o’clock. It has no cover and no drum, and the ball-bearing-mounted mainspring is attached onto the frame instead. At 3 o’clock, a new control device is seen, which uses a control stem and a selection lever to selectively control a corresponding function. The crown is made into a flat “telescopic” crown that is recessed into the case. The fifth patent is for the method it took to fit the 0.22mm thin crystal onto a bezel integrated with the case.
It’s other world-record-setting timepiece is the Altiplano Ultimate Automatic, the world’s thinnest mechanical automatic watch at only 4.3mm thick.
The thinness is achieved by using extremely miniaturised parts, some barely thicker than a hair, as well as integrating the calibre and the case together to create a single unit. The case is also used as a mainplate.
The 41mm Altiplano Ultimate Automatic is available in white gold and pink gold, runs on the 910P calibre, and has a 50-hour power reserve.
A new, revamped quartz-powered Possession line for women features rotating bezels paired with colourful interchangeable straps. The rotating bezels evoke the rotating rings found in its counterpart jewellery collection, as does the colour theme that the line introduces.
“It combines all the Piaget savoir-faire with the gem-setting, gold craftsmanship,” Nouri says. “It has a playfulness to it, with the rotating dancing ring.”
The line presents different variations of silvered dials with diamond-set indexes and bezels, cased in stainless steel, white gold or pink gold. Dials of semi-precious stones are also available in lapis lazuli, malachite, carnelian and turquoise, with matching straps and fully complementing its jewellery line.
The high-jewellery Altiplano line also features malachite and lapis lazuli marquetry dials. Created by artist Hervé Obligi, each of the two 41mm watches features a tourbillon and is limited to eight pieces. The watches are equipped with 670P calibre and a 48-hour power reserve.
Piaget also added six new variations to its Extremely Lady line, highlighting gold bracelets worked to resemble textures of fur, frost and wood. They are paired with dials made of semi-precious materials including lapis lazuli and mother-of-pearl.