Breguet Ends 2014 With a Serious Update to Tradition

Breguet Tradition Automatique Seconde Rétrograde 7097. Source: Breguet via Bloomberg

As 2014 winds down, watch nerds are anxiously awaiting the flood of new wristwear to come at SIHH 2015 (calm now, it starts January 19, and we'll have live coverage for you right here). Not to be outdone, Breguet has offered up a small peek at its 2015 collection to stoke the fires as we look forward to bonus season. The Tradition Automatique Seconde Rétrograde 7097 is as impressive as it is a mouthful. It has all the little antiquarian flourishes you expect from Breguet while feeling thoroughly like a watch for the future.

First Thoughts: This isn't necessarily a 10th anniversary watch, but it does come a decade after the first Tradition models, now the basis of Breguet's collection. This means the 7097 has certain boxes to check—the floating smaller dial, the exposed movement components, and the fluted caseband are all there. But the brushed silver finish on the dial and retrograde seconds, as well as the black finish on the bridges and plates, gives this Tradition a very non-traditional look. No images of the rose gold 7097 have been released yet, but we're still betting white gold will be the way to go here.

Cocktail Party Fact: The (extremely long and cumbersome) name of this watch nods to the retrograde seconds and automatic winding system, but there's a lot more technology packed into this watch than just those two things. The escapement is a straight-line inverted lever (enjoy, nerds!) and the silicon balance spring is shaped with a Breguet overcoil to ensure accuracy. There's also a unique Breguet-invented device called a "pare-chute" hanging over the balance that protects the sensitive staff mechanism from shocks. It's innovation, but 18th-century style.

The Basics

  • Case Diameter: 40mm
  • Case Materials: White gold or rose gold, both with fluted case band
  • Dial: Solid gold with silvered finish and engine-turning decoration
  • Strap: Leather strap with white gold buckle
  • Complications: Retrograde seconds display
  • Reference Number: 7097

206502532

The Movement

  • Caliber: 505SR1
  • Power Reserve: 50 hours
  • Winding: Automatic
  • Finishing: Black bead-blasted plates and bridges, circular graining, blued hands, and solid gold winding rotor (not visible here)

Getting One

  • Availability: Mid 2015
  • Price: Not yet announced

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