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Hublot's latest collection dazzles

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Hublot Techframe Ferrari 70 Years is offered in Peek (polyetheretherketone) Carbon, a multi-layer hypoallergenic material.

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Hublot Big Bang Unico Blue Sapphire.

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Hublot MP-09 Tourbillon Bi-Axis Titanium

THREE timepieces in Hublot's latest collection launched at the Baselworld watch fair in March show that the brand still dazzles with its innovations and partnerships.

The tie-up with Ferrari has produced a watch that's designed like a super car, giving it an aerodynamic look, while Hublot's ingenuity in watchmaking resulted in another watch with an original case which provides a full view of its tourbillon. The third watch has a blue sapphire case, a first in watchmaking.

The Hublot Techframe Ferrari 70 Years, a celebration of the famed Italian sports carmaker's 70th birthday, is a flying tourbillon chronograph that Ferrari designed like it would have in building a new sports car.

"The starting point for the designers was the Hublot movement - the 'engine' of the watch - around which they freely designed a high performance chassis," Hublot says in a press release.

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"Like that of a Ferrari, its lattice structure - that is unique in the world of watchmaking - offers maximum strength for minimal weight."

Apart from gold and titanium, the watch is offered in Peek (polyetheretherketone) Carbon, a multi-layer hypoallergenic material - made from especially long carbon fibres - that is very durable and reliable. That's not Hublot's only innovative touch. Two lateral push-buttons make it easy to change the strap, while offering maximum security.

Powering the tourbillon chronograph is a new hand-wound Hublot movement with five days of power reserve. The single-button chronograph, considered to be "the best of the best" by specialists, is handled by an original lever in Ferrari red anodised aluminium.

Limited to 70 pieces, the watch retails for S$180,000 for the titanium version, S$225,800 for the gold version and S$195,700 for the carbon version.

The Hublot MP-09 Tourbillon Bi-Axis Titanium features a bi-axial tourbillon that makes a complete rotation in one minute for the first axis and every 30 seconds for the second. To provide maximum view of the tourbillon and its fascinating rotation, the watch offers an all-new designed movement and case - seen at 6 o'clock in the large opening that covers a very complex three-sided sapphire glass.

The date corrector is also ingenious. A simple winding movement of the lever up or down will move the date respectively forward or back by a day.

Housed in the 49mm case is a Hublot automatic skeleton movement with five-days of power reserve. The watch is limited to 50 pieces in titanium and 20 in gold, at S$301,000 each.

The new Hublot Big Bang Unico Blue Sapphire illustrates that the brand can continue to squeeze more out of its past innovations. Last year, it cut a sapphire case on an unprecedented scale, mastering a complex material which is both ultra-resistant and totally "invisible" thanks to its transparency. This year, it turns the case to blue.

There are coloured synthetic sapphires but none exceeding 2kg, because it's very difficult to produce bigger ones and in perfectly uniform colour. By pushing the limits of engineering and chemistry, Hublot has developed a sophisticated and costly process to lick the problem. The result is a blue sapphire that retains all the original properties of a material which is ultra-scratch resistant, totally transparent and among the hardest in existence.

The Blue Sapphire, with a 45mm case, is limited to 250 pieces. Each sells for S$120,400.