Bulgari’s race to the flattest started in 2014, when it started unveiling one complication after another of record-setting slimness, culminating with the thinnest-ever automatic chronograph two years ago.
While the original version is monochromatic and all titanium, the new Octo Finissimo Chronograph GMT Titanium is a twist on the theme. It’s fitted to an integrated rubber strap, in a first for the model that leaves it even more featherweight.
Admittedly – at least from a technical standpoint – the new Octo chronograph isn’t as exciting as it was when the model was first launched. This is just a facelift, but it’s a good one.
Though similar to earlier versions of the Octo chronograph, the new model stands out for its palette, which arguably gives it more wrist presence. The original version has an integrated metal bracelet that flowed well in terms of visual continuity. But the strap is compelling for the opposite reason: it makes the extra-thin case stand out, increasing the visual contrast while making the watch look a bit fancier.
The elimination of the bracelet will surely change its tangible feel on the wrist substantially. Because of the lightweight materials – a titanium case and strap in rubber – the watch will feel almost non-existent on wrist, taking the ultra-thin nature of the Octo one step forward.
And like the time-only version of the Octo, the Chronograph is fairly priced in most iterations. This costs US$17,200, making it one of the most competitively priced luxury-sports chronographs on the market. Though it lacks the fine finishing of its higher-priced competitors, the Octo chronograph makes up for it in design flair.
Thanks to the BVL 318 inside – which is only 3.3 mm high – the Oct chronograph clocks in at an unbelievable 6.9 mm. That’s probably as thin as an automatic chronograph built with traditional materials can be.
One reason for its slimness is the horizontal layout of the components, which are spread out rather than stacked up, explaining why the movement is a rather wide 37.2 mm. The winding rotor, for instance, is peripheral, a narrow ring made of aluminium and platinum mounted on the perimeter of the movement.
Key facts and price
Bulgari Octo Finissimo Chronograph GMT Titanium
Diameter: 42 mm
Height: 6.9 mm
Water resistance: 30 m
Movement: BVL 318
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, GMT, and chronograph
Frequency: 28,800 beats per hour (4 Hz)
Power reserve: 55 hours
Strap: Rubber with pin buckle
Limited edition: No
Availability: From Bulgari online shops, boutiques, and retailers
Price: US$17,200, or 24,300 Singapore dollars
For more, visit bulgari.com.
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