It all started with an idea conceived by Bugatti and Jacob & Co. – how to reproduce the visceral sensation of the iconic Bugatti W16 engine in a timepiece. Automobiles and watches have always shared a special link, many car aficionados also love watches. Both require the highest degree of mechanical precision, combining beauty and performance in unique ways. However, watch movements had never achieved to really capture the feel, energy, and power of a high-performance car engine. This was the challenge.
A watch honoring the Bugatti Chiron
After almost a full year of development, Jacob & Co. now presented the Bugatti Chiron Tourbillon, designed to honor the Chiron and its legendary 16-cylinder engine in a timepiece. The case is inspired by the flowing lines of the Chiron and the movement, or “engine block,” intended to duplicate the Bugatti engine, is placed under a massive sapphire crystal.
Pushing the right-hand crown of the timepiece, the engine comes to life – the crankshaft turns and the pistons pump up and down, just like a true internal combustion engine. Two “turbochargers” (down from four in the actual Chiron engine) on the side of the engine block spin while the engine runs. The movement is comprised of 578 components, amounting to the highest level of complication for the development team.
Completely new and challenging development
The incredible flying tourbillon movement is a completely clean-sheet design. Jacob & Co. has been working with its movement suppliers for more than a year to realize this spectacular piece. The top and sides of the watch are sapphire crystal, making every single facet of the watch visible. In the center, of course, is the engine block animation. The crankshaft driving this is one of the smallest and most complicated watch parts ever manufactured, made out of one solid steel piece. The movement is completely suspended in four places, with what looks like the actual shocks from the Chiron. The movement is, in fact, floating inside the case, moving up and down. Framing the engine block are two “exhausts,” completing the engine theme of the design.
Aside from the animation, the general theme is puristic – less is more. Beyond the flying tourbillon with the Jacob & Co. logo, the only other branding anywhere on the front of the watch is the subtle EB logo on the engine compartment, where the crankshaft holds 16 pistons, poised and ready for action. The Jacob & Co. x Bugatti Chiron Tourbillon is a true engine on the wrist.
About the Partnership
In 2019, Bugatti and Jacob & Co. signed a partnership to create unique timepieces. These watches are true to the spirit of both companies, taking watchmaking to impossible heights.
To inaugurate this partnership led by performance, two timepieces were created. These watches, based on the Twin Turbo Furious and the Epic X Chrono, were directly inspired by the unique design and spirit of Bugatti hypercars.
This year, Bugatti and Jacob & Co. are introducing new watches in the Twin Turbo Furious collection, as well as now the Bugatti Chiron, a completely new line.