A Timepiece in Tribute to
A Legendary Car
In Milan, Bugatti unveiled its “Lifeline Collection”, an assortment of accessories and clothing which designs are all inspired by the aerodynamic bodies of the Bugatti cars.
Among this prestigious collection stood the latest creation of Parmigiani Fleurier, the Bugatti Aerolithe, a stunning chronograph of abyss blue colours, bearing resemblance to the legendary car of the same name.
How can one transpose the most striking or distinctive feature of a car onto a watch? This is the quest that constantly drives research into design at Parmigiani Fleurier. An ability to think outside of the box. The distinctive feature of the Aerolithe car is the rivet that crosses it from front to end, giving it a fluid and futuristic streamlined look. This dorsal seam was hence replicated on the watch, on each of its four lugs, symbolising the genius of Jean Bugatti and the technical prowess that gave rise to the car almost 80 years ago.
The Bugatti Aerolithe is equipped with a flyback chronograph, allowing the wearer to stop, reset and restart the chronometer with a single press. Originally used by pilots to precisely calculate their flying time for a given course, this flyback module was specially offset at 180° to make its pushbuttons more accessible. They are easier to grip with the thumb at 8 and 10 o’clock, rather than with the index finger at 2 and 4 o'clock as they would normally be.
Thinner than the brand's other chronographs, the titanium and white gold case of the Bugatti Aerolithe has a redesigned, more slender, more elevated profile, echoing the captivating curves of the car.
The abyss blue dial – first of other dial colours to come for this model – is a unique achievement of Quadrance et Habillage, the dial manufacture of Parmigiani’s watchmaking hub. Over its infinite depths sit the vivid red hands, which echo the red and black Bugatti logo at six o'clock. This blue and red contrast is further echoed in the Hermès strap, with its grained sapphire blue calfskin offset by edging in the highshine vivid red of the dial. Finally, the buckle has been completely redesigned to symbolise a car grille, so that the Bugatti DNA encircles the wrist from all angles.
The Bugatti Aerolithe is technical feat, a marvel of aesthetic as well as it embodies an intrinsic illustration of the potential an independent manufacture can offer. In its making, the watch relates the tale of a perfectly verticalised watchmaking centre with boundless creativity, giving Parmigiani Fleurier its strength.
The Bugatti Aerolithe is available as of Decembre 2013.