Under its elegant disguise, the Jaquet Droz Grande Seconde Deadbeat hides a complication rarely found in a modern mechanical watch. Which is perhaps why the Swiss luxury brand thought to present it to members of the press alongside one of its historic pocket watches also featuring a deadbeat seconds.
Introduced during the Age of Enlightenment, the deadbeat or independent seconds complication features a ticking motion en lieu of the linear sweep that usually accompanies a high-end timepiece. In recent years though, the tick has made a comeback, and Jaquet Droz has decided to pair its latest interpretation with its most revered collection, the Grande Seconde.
Instantly recognizable for its figure eight layout – a staple of the brand – and stunning Grand Feu enamel dial, it serves as the backdrop for one of the brand’s most complicated watches, featuring hours, minutes, date, and deadbeat seconds functions.
Subtle changes have been made to make way for the new deadbeat complication. However the design remains light and well balanced. Traditionally placed inside the lower off-centered dial, the hypnotic seconds hand can now be found at the heart of the dial, while the retrograde date takes its usual spot inside the lower off-center dial.
As well as introducing a rare complication for the modern era, Jaquet Droz has gone for an unorthodox mix of Roman and Arabic numerals inside the hour dial. The red indication for the 31st day of the month is also an interesting and welcomed addition.
Inside, the watch features caliber 2695SMR, an automatic movement made exclusively for Jaquet Droz. Visible through a sapphire crystal case back, the new caliber boasts a power reserve of 40 hours due most likely to the energy required for the deadbeat seconds hand.
With the Grande Seconde Deadbeat, Jaquet Droz revisits a revered complication and a key moment of its heritage, and brings it into the modern age. The Jaquet Droz Grande Seconde Deadbeat is available in a limited edition of 88 pieces in 18-karat red gold, priced at CHF 29,000 Swiss francs excluding VAT.