Combining a rotating escapement, chain-link hour display and retrograde minutes, the Vortex is by far the most exotic of Hautlence complications. Originally introduced in conventional alloys like titanium, and even a panoramic sapphire case, the Vortex is now matched with a case as unusual as the movement.
Named HLLightColor, the case material is a carbon composite mixed with ceramic, giving it the properties of both its constituent materials – the lightness and strength of carbon as well as the hardness and colour of ceramic. This explains the brightly shaded, two-tone cases that are finished with alternately matte and polished surfaces.
Hautlence took inspiration from the sci-fi films Tron for the colour scheme (just like Rado did for its R-One of 2012), giving each of the case colours a contrasting highlight along the edges. While the Vortex Gamma is available in three different colours combinations for the launch edition, the colours can be varied endlessly, allowing a client to create his own case.
Material aside, the case is constructed just like that of the original, built like an envelope into which the movement slots in. Six sapphire crystals show off the HL2.0 movement from all sides.
Made up of almost 500 parts, the automatic movement shows the hours on a chain linked to the escapement. As the hours advance, the escapement rotates alongside once an hour. Minutes are indicated on a retrograde scale in the centre.
Price and availability
The Vortex Gamma is a limited edition of eight in each colour, priced at SFr170,000 including 8% Swiss tax. That’s equivalent to US$180,000.
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