PRE-SIHH 2017 : the 60th anniversary of Piaget’s Altiplano

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Piaget’s flagship Altiplano is sixty years old now, and although Horologium is significantly younger than that, we have liked featuring it, and have a special fondness for the record-breaking version that came out in 2014.

At the SIHH 2017 Piaget will celebrate the Altiplano’s birthday with a new 38mm manual-wind model, and 43mm automatic model, both in white gold.

The modern Altiplano movements are descendants of Calibre 9P, the first ultra-thin hand-wound movement made by Piaget in 1957, which was 2mm thick. Since 1957, the Piaget Manufacture has produced some two dozen ultra-thin calibres in-house, with around a dozen of them having set new records for thinness. These achievements and focus are a major distinguishing feature of the brand.

Both of the new Altiplano anniversary models have a deep blue sunburst dial in a blue that has been strong part of Piaget’s history and which will be familiar to many. The blue cross is also a nod to the past, as is the use of “Piaget Automatic”, which appeared on their first ultra-thin watch. The white gold of the case is carried through to the hour markers and baton hands.

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Now what is really interesting is what’s inside.

Inside the 43mm model is the 2.35mm thin Calibre 1200P, representing the fourth generation of its ultra-thin self-winding movements and measuring 2.35 mm thin. Launched in 2010 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Calibre 12P, Piaget see it as a ‘bridge between past and present’, and have chosen it for this watch for this reason. It beats at 21,600VPH and has a power reserve of forty-four hours.

Visible through the open case back are the micro-rotor associated with this movement, along with are bevelled bridges adorned with circular Côtes de Genève, a circular-grained main plate, satin-brushed steel parts, and blued screws. The gold oscillating weight is engraved with the Piaget coat of arms.

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Obviously, the 38mm model also has something interesting inside, the 2.1mm thin Calibre 430P, which represents the second generation of Piaget’s manual-wind ultra-thin movements and also beats at 21,600VPH, with a power reserve of forty-three hours.

Coming on matching blue alligator straps, these are two quintessentially Piaget dress watches that are, both inside and out, pretty much as timeless as you want a dress watch to be.

23/1/17 ADDENDUM : For photos of these watches taken at SIHH 2017, click here.



Categories: Piaget, SIHH 2017, Watch movements, Watch Profile, watches

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