Breguet, founded in 1775, is famous as the brand that invented the tourbillon and the raised terminal curve known as the Breguet overcoil, and you would think that would be enough. The brand has not stopped innovating, however, having filed more than 100 patents in the last 10 years alone. Some of the results of Breguet’s ongoing dedication to research and development were on display in Basel, beginning with the Classique Chronometrie 7727. It contains the 574DR, the brand’s 10Hz high frequency movement (72,000 VpH, compared to the standard 28,000), first introduced in 2011. High frequency means greater accuracy, but also more friction on faster moving components, so Breguet made the balance spring, pallet lever and escape wheel out of silicon, so the entire movement is built to take the abuse of higher frequency.
Also working its magic in this movement is the brand’s patented magnetic pivot, consisting basically of two magnets that create an artificial gravitational force that not only repels the effects of gravity but makes the escapement more stable. The stability results in greater accuracy, bringing the movement’s average rate to 1/+3 seconds a day. The COSC chronometer standard is 4/+6 seconds a day.
Breguet has also been refining its mainspring and barrel to enhance power reserve. The Classique Reserve du Marche 5277 has a new mainspring, developed in conjunction with Nivarox, made of a new stainless steel alloy that is non magnetic and does not contain Berylium or cobalt, which are bad for the environment. It works in conjunction with a thinner arbor that allows for a longer mainspring and more coils, resulting in a longer power reserve and more constant torque. This new system will eventually be applied to all Breguet and some other Swatch Group brand movements.
Other goodies include a new Reine de Naples dual time, with a unique rotating balance (on a disk) that depicts the sun moving along with the time.
And last but certainly not least, we have the Tourbillon Extra-Thin Automatic, that works with a peripheral rotor for a sleeker profile.
Photos by Seth Semilof.