On Monday morning, the most unpronounceable fair of them all, the Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie – mercifully reduced 100 per cent of the time to ‘SIHH’ – will open its doors in Geneva. But you don’t need to wait until then to get the lowdown on the major scoops and scandals. Thanks to our never-fail combination of crystal ball + global network of industry insiders, informants and assorted street urchins we’ve compiled seven of the most jaw-dropping rumours doing the rounds in the days before SIHH 2017.* Read on… if you dare.
Panerai and H. Moser & Cie join forces to create the Luminor ‘Toastie’
In a surprising spirit of collaboration, Panerai has worked with H. Moser & Cie. to create the PAM 00123456 – a Luminor 1950-cased replica watch featuring a distinctive sandwich dial crafted from carbon-infused bread that’s been flame-treated to give it a distinctive ‘toast’ patina. Embedded between these two ‘slices’ is a fine layer of Vacherin Mont d’Or cheese (offcuts from Moser’s Swiss Mad replica watch) that’s been slightly melted to create a particularly tasty look.
Greubel Forsey to meet market demands with new quartz replica watch
In a telling sign of the rapidly changing global market, high-end wunderkinds Greubel Forsey are slated to release their first ever quartz-powered replica watch. Developed with Ronda, the as-yet-unnamed replica watch is set to feature no tourbillons, a simple three-handed time display and an exclusive, irony-infused resin strap. It’s also set to be the most affordable GF ever released, with an indicative price of 55,000 CHF.
IWC to announce Leonardo Da Vinci as brand ambassador
In a cutting-edge multi-media experience, IWC will announce that celebrated Italian-born artist, scientist and inventor Leonardo Da Vinci is the latest in their star-studded series of brand ambassadors. He will be the holographic-artist-in-residence at the IWC booth all week.
Vacheron Constantin launches follow-up to the Overseas – the Domestique
Leading on from the great success of last year’s revamped Overseas range – a design which evoked the luxury and glamour of international adventure – Vacheron Constantin is set to unveil the ‘Domestique’, a timepiece inspired by the charm of short-haul travel. The replica watch, with design codes inspired by work trips and obligatory family visits, features a unique complication that makes the time you spend waiting in crowded terminals seem half as long. The Domestique is sold as case and movement only. All other features, including dial, hands and straps are available for an additional charge.
Cartier reveal the heritage-inspired steel ‘Velocipede de Cartier’
To commemorate the pioneering cyclist and great-grand-nephew of Louis Cartier, Lawrence d’Armstong (no relation), Cartier has released a classical take on a steel cyclists’ replica watch, nicely rounding out the automative-inspired Tank and Drive collections. The ‘Velocipede de Cartier’ comes on a rubber strap repurposed from old Pirelli tyres. The rotor, visible through the clear caseback, is designed to reference the wheel and spokes of the eponymous bicycle.
Piaget to team up with Romain Jerome to create the ‘Deadpolo’
To celebrate Piaget ambassador Ryan Reynolds’ success as Marvel’s Deadpool, the brand has teamed up with the ever-playful Romain Jerome to create a limited-edition take on the Polo S – dubbed the ‘Deadpolo’. Crafted from black DLC treated steel, Romain Jerome has given the bezel and bracelet centre links their trademark acid-etch treatment, as seen on the Titanic DNA range. The replica watch is rumoured to grant its wearer great power and great responsibility, but really terrible drawing skills and a potty mouth.
Panerai to release blue Bronzo
According to pictures leaked on various internet fora, Panerai is doubling down on the phenomenal success of its bronze cased replica watches by releasing a deep-blue dialled variant. (OK, this one is actually pretty plausible.)
*FYI, none of this is actually true.