In recent years Cartier has unveiled a “grande complication” for each SIHH, featuring a tourbillon, perpetual calendar and monopusher chrono. In 2012, Cartier’s piece won’t be a wristwatch, but a pocket watch.
Visually similar to both the caliber 9362 MC Rotonde Grand Complication Skeleton (LE of 30) and the Calibre de Cartier case platinum Rotonde Grande Complication (LE of 25) but with the cut-out Roman numerals used in other models in Cartier’s “Fine Watchmaking” collection, this utterly extravagant 59mm pocket watch powered by the hand-wound Calibre 9436 MC is white gold and will be made in a limited edition of ten pieces (five diamond versions will also be produced later next year).
The pocket watch uses the same movement that was used in the (45mm) Calibre de Cartier Rotonde Grand Complication. The Calibre 9436MC movement by Renaud & Papi consists of 457 parts, requiring around 212 hours of work to complete. The C-shaped tourbillon bridge is, of course, the Cartier signature.
The Roman numerals are machined from a single block of white gold then hand finished, with over 300 edges of the numerals bevelled by hand. Reportedly, it takes a staggering three weeks to complete them.
If you don’t feel able to pull off a pocket watch, or feel that at 155.05 grams, it’s too heavy for you, it comes with an obsidian and rock crystal stand.
Oh, and if you’re wondering about what the outlay might be to own this pocket watch, the calibre 9362 MC Rotonde has a price of USD510,000, the Calibre de Cartier version, USD490,000.
The white gold grande complication pocket watch? Well this will set you back EUR500,000 – that makes it around USD652,100 as I write this.