This watch, introduced in 2005, started a decade of rebellion for the usually-staid maison of the Vallée de Joux.
With La Tradition, Breguet surprised everyone with their high spirit and imagination, which began more than a decade of haute horology in this now-iconic form.
To achieve the design of this innovative (for Breguet) watch, the maison employed nearly thirty collaborators to bring many of the horologic elements above the main plate, for the viewing pleasure of the enthusiast.
Each of these craftspeople brought aboard were subject to the traditional methods of watch design, as is historically valued in the Vallée, a hotbed of horology. At the same time, new technologies were innovated to preserve the beauty and symmetry of the watch while still achieving modern technical excellence.
A special anti-reflective optical coating was applied to the sapphire on both top and bottom to avoid glare while viewing the impressive movement. This, in part, began an industry-wide revolution of skeleton and see-through watches that continues over a decade later. The escapement, barrel and arc of intermediary gears are all in full view, as is the pare-chute shock absorbing system pioneered by Breguet.
Along with these many innovations, Breguet made sure to tip their hats to their immense heritage, taking cues from Breguet’s famed subscription model more than a century before. The La Tradition’s architecture and sophistication, cased in a classic style coin-edged case, meant it would not be mistaken for another brand despite the far reach of its new beginnings. The Breguet DNA is well preserved in the lugs, crown, Breguet hands and other flourishes.
When the pieces were introduced, they made such an industry-wide splash that a new piece was featured and sold above retail by a popular auction house on the very year of introduction. Obtaining one became a quest for many collectors of the time.
The astounding success and demand that outstripped supply led to over a decade of haute horology performed on this platform. To see it in its nascent form is as remarkable as it is dream worthy. This contemporary classic has become scarce as owners seek to find the premiere model in a run that some say was as low as only “hundreds” of examples.
We feel privileged to present what was one of the very first USA deliveries of the on-coming revolution to follow!
Serial: 3268 (from first year of production.)
Metal: Yellow Gold Case
Size: 37mm. Winding: manual
Dial: small silver, machine turned, 12 o’clock position, bearing serial number.
Power Reserve: 50 hours. Indicator visible on front upper left.
Included: Watch, original crocodile strap, buckle, burl wood tomb box, original gold buckle papers.