Louis Erard Introduces the Affordable Tourbillon Alain Silberstein

A well-priced proposition back in black.

Louis Erard returns to its flagship model, the Le Régulateur Tourbillon x Alain Silberstein, now in black. The tourbillon builds on the previous collaborations with the French designer but ups the ante on price and complexity. Louis Erard first tapped Alain Silberstein, known for his instantly recognisable Bauhaus-inspired aesthetic, in 2019 for a successful collaboration that led to a second collection in 2021.

This new 78-piece limited edition is the first time Le Régulateur Tourbillon is presented in Silberstein’s typical Bauhaus colours. The model initially debuted last year as part of a three-piece set in khaki green, followed by a 10-piece limited edition made for UAE-based retailer Ahmed Seddiqi & Sons.

Initial thoughts

Louis Erard has created an interesting niche for itself in the world of independent watchmaking with its ongoing string of well-priced collaborations with established independent watchmakers like Konstantin Chaykin and Vianney Halter.

And while the brand is arguably at its best when it challenges conventional expectations of watch design, such as its collaborations with designers from outside the industry like Oliver Mosset and atelier oï, the designs of Alain Silberstein have proven timeless in their own quirky way.

Le Régulateur Tourbillon features a 40 mm titanium case that is also surprisingly slim at just 11.8 mm. That said, it’s likely to wear larger due to the hinged strap loops that extend beyond the case. With a black nylon strap and matching titanium hook and loop fastener – plus an unexpected 100 m water resistance rating – the watch is surprisingly sporty.

While Louis Erard’s mainline products target a sub-CHF5,000 price point, including the Alain Silberstein Le Chrono Monopoussoir, the tourbillon extends the brand’s offerings to the low five-figure range. This reflects the increasing complexity and ambition of the model, explaining the CHF15,900 price of Le Régulateur Tourbillon. Despite the nominally higher price point, Le Régulateur Tourbillon is nonetheless a compelling value thanks to the high-spec movement developed by BCP Tourbillons in La Chaux de Fonds.

Importantly, the Louis Erard collaborations are the current are the only current Silberstein models priced comparably to the originals from the 1990s and early 2000s that are available on the secondary market. This tourbillon, for example, costs less than the same as the Tourbillon Volant (powered by an STT movement of similar quality to the BCP calibre). Consequently, Louis Erard collaborations are arguably the only ones that make sense.

Overall, Le Régulateur Tourbillon offers a mix of technical interest, originality, wearability, and value that is exceedingly rare.

Technically competent

The BCP T02 movement was developed by Olivier Mory, a veteran of Sellita and ValFleurier who launched BCP Tourbillons in 2016, with the goal of supplying low-cost tourbillon movements to independent watchmakers.

The BCP movement is noteworthy for a few reasons, the first being 100% of its components are Swiss made according to the company. This contrasts with the norm for low-cost tourbillons, which often rely on parts (or entire movements) outsourced to countries with lower labour costs. What makes this even more surprising is the premium nature of some of the suppliers. For example, the escapement components are manufactured by Atokalpa, a sister company of Parmigiani Fleurier and Vaucher Fleurier.

Beyond its Swiss origin, the BCP tourbillon offers a lengthy power reserve of 100 hours and features a free-sprung Gyromax-style balance. At a time when low-cost regulators are all too common even on simpler watches at higher price points, this technical competency is refreshing and significantly enhances the overall value.

Naturally, the targeted price point required some compromises, namely in the industrial, no-frills approach to its manufacture and decoration, with economical machine-applied finishing visible throughout. But even though the finishing is necessarily simplistic, it’s still attractive enough with circular Côtes de Geneve radiating outward from the tourbillon axis.

Key facts and price

Le Régulateur Tourbillon Louis Erard x Alain Silberstein Black
Ref. 89356TT02.BTT82

Diameter: 40 mm
Height: 11.8 mm
Material: Titanium (grade 2)
Crystal: Sapphire
Water resistance: 100 m

Movement: BCP T02
Features: Hours, minutes, and 60-second tourbillon
Frequency:  21,600 beats per hour (3 Hz)
Winding: Manual wind
Power reserve: 100 hours

Strap: Black nylon

Limited edition: 78 pieces
Direct from Louis Erard online
Price: CHF15,900

For more, visit Louiserard.com.


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