Spirit of Travel: Montblanc 4810 ExoTourbillon
Montblanc melds métiers d’art with mechanical complexity in the limited edition 4810 ExoTourbillon Slim 110 Years Edition revealed at the SIHH 2016.
First launched in 2006 to celebrate the centenary of the maison, Montblanc’s 4810 collection has been newly overhauled for the brand’s 110th anniversary. The collection takes its name from the apparent height of Mont Blanc’s peak in metres, and has a full range of regular and limited edition timepieces, the most exciting of which is the 4810 ExoTourbillon Slim 110 Years Edition. The watch features three versions of miniature painting on its dial, with the motif being maps of the different continents – North America, Europe, and Asia. Maps, of course, evoke the spirit of travel and Montblanc’s founders had been early business travellers between Hamburg (where the company is based) and New York, which was the destination that would first come to mind when one thinks of Transatlantic Travel.
Painted as viewed from the sky, the continents were given a three-dimensional effect using layers upon layers of enamel paint. The artist who worked on these watches had been the same one who painted the twin hemispheres of last year’s Tourbillon Cylindrique Geosphères Vasco da Gama. Hailing from Montblanc’s spiritual and physical home, she paints in thick layers of vitreous enamel, beginning with the numerous shades of blue for the oceans before moving on to the greens and browns of land and mountains, not forgetting the whites of the polar ice floes.
With a miniature painting dominating much of the dial, the remaining space below is dedicated to the ExoTourbillon, which also functions as a small seconds indicator thanks to the little red arrow on the tourbillon cage. The ExoTourbillon mechanism forgoes the traditional tourbillon design for a smaller cage that’s more like a platform outside and away from the balance. According to Montblanc, this reduces overall weight for improved isochronism. Also, the lack of a cage allows for a stop seconds mechanism to be easily – and elegantly – implemented. Without any risk of striking the cage, the balance wheel can be halted for precise time setting. Finally, an extra large balance is also possible with this geometry and Montblanc has certainly taken the opportunity to show off its in-house savoir faire with balance wheels and hairsprings.
These watches are limited to 36 pieces for the North America and Europe versions, and 38 for the Asia version, for a total of 110 timepieces.
- Dimensions: 42mm
- Functions: Hours, minutes, small seconds
- Power Reserve: 50 hours
- Movement: Self-winding Montblanc Calibre MB 29.24 with ExoTourbillon
- Case: White gold
- Water Resistance: 50 meters
- Strap: Black alligator leather with white gold ardillon buckle
Text by Jamie Tan
This story first appeared in WOW.