Exclusivity is not a novel concept when it comes to luxury watches; the price points of these timepieces have been designed to be the doorkeepers of an elite club, allowing in only those who have ascertained a certain amount of success. Then comes scarcity; with small production quantities, not to mention limited edition references, the perceived value of these watches increases exponentially.
However, it seems that in the current watch economy (which is still in a difficult state) brands are looking for even more ways of creating emotion within their products; and watches like the Portugieser Constant-Force Tourbillon from IWC Schaffhausen are using customisation to lure in the buyers. It’s no longer sexy to be 1 of 1000 or 1 0f 10 for that matter (which is incredible considering the number of watches around the world) because with personalisation options, you could be wearing a watch that is 1 of 1; a watch which you can truly call your own.
Let’s start with the one thing you can’t customise – the movement. Within this watch rests the Calibre 94800 hand wound movement that provides the watch with its star complication, the constant force tourbillon. Constant force means that the amplitude of the balance remains absolutely stable (only for the first 48 hours of the power reserve) and they achieve this by disconnecting the escapement from the direct flow of energy and is stored temporarily in an additional balance spring. This balance spring is put under tension once a second resulting in the added theatrics of deadbeat seconds. But don’t take my word for it, here’s Thomas Gäumann, head of R&D of movements at IWC to explain how it works:
On top of that, it has a dual moon phase indicator along with a power reserve indicator for all 96 hours of energy inside the barrel.
Movement aside, the main draw of this Portugieser Constant-Force Tourbillon is that almost every other part is customisable. You’ll be able to choose whether you want a red gold or platinum case, four different dial colours, rhodium plated hands and indices or to have them in red gold, not to mention the many different Santoni alligator straps to choose from. This results in thousands of permutations for the watch and if that is not personalised enough, IWC also gives each customer the ability to engrave the caseback in up to four different positions.
The number on the pricetag (in MYR) runs into seven digits and in order to get your hands on one you have to make your way down to an IWC Boutique. Sure, it’s a bit of an inconvenience to get down there but who’s to say IWC won’t be a little open to some additional suggestions you would like to make about your personalised watch?
For more information, you can contact the folks over at IWC Schaffhausen by clicking here.