Last year F.P. Journe launched its Centigraphe and Automatique Réserve in titanium, a material that most certainly suits two of the most sportive watches of the brand. However, precious metals have always played a very important role in the universe of Journe, as gold is even his material of choice to craft movements from. It is, therefore, more than fitting that he now introduces both models in platinum as well as in 18k 6N gold.
With Journe, the difference has always been not that he uses precious metals, but how. To maintain the sportive character of both watches, he applied a brushed finish to the case as well as the bracelet. This gives a unique effect. The gold is still recognizable as such but has a more high-tech look to it. The platinum could be mistaken for brushed stainless steel until you put it next to each other and notice the difference in hue. For owners, it will be the added heft of especially the platinum version that will confirm that they are wearing something very special.
Journe’s subtle use of color also adds to the appeal of the new watches and strengthens their identity. The platinum models feature a blue ceramic inlay in the bezel which matches the dial. The watches crafted from 18K 6N gold have one in black, which highlight the silver guilloche dial with its ruthenium finish. Because the 6N gold has such a deep color, this works perfectly. While Journe’s creations are objects of art, they also maintain their practical use, and particular attention was paid to the legibility of all functions. With a diameter of 44mm, there is plenty of space to do so, and Journe makes good use of it.
The movement of both the Centigraphe as well as that of the Automatique Réserve, are made from 18K rose gold. For a chronograph, the Centigraphe has several notable features. First of all is this complication not operated by the usual pushers, but by means of a rocker, which starts, stops and resets the chronograph. It is powered by a separate gear train which is driven directly from the mainspring and features a 1/100th of a second readout.
The Automatique Réserve also has quite a few things to offer as it combines an oversized date with a day/night indication as well as one for the power reserve. This is an impressive 160 hours, while even with the Centigraphe it takes 80 hours for it to wind down its mainspring completely. With the chronograph function continuously running it goes however much faster. This will exhaust its power reserve in 24 hours, mainly because of its ability to measure time in 1/100th of a second, which means that many of its hands run much faster than with an ordinary chronograph.
While the titanium versions of both watches are magnificent, these new varieties add to that the appeal of precious metal. Journe shows that he is a master in incorporating these materials in contemporary creation, and even letting them amplify their sportive character. Both Automatique Réserve, as well as the Centigraphe in platinum and 18K 6N gold, are therefore welcome additions to the collection, even though as this also means that of now the Octa Automatique Réserve and Centigraphe Souverain are retired.