Hands-on Laurent Ferrier Tourbillon Grand Sport – the sporty tourbillon

Laurent Ferrier Tourbillon Grand Sport is part of a new collection, launched on 6th of May 2019. The Tourbillon grand sport celebrates two important milestones for the brand’s owners: 40 years since they participated in the famous 24 hours Le Mans race and 10 years since the conception of the brand’s first tourbillon. To celebrate properly, the brand launched this sports watch featuring a beautiful tourbillon. This hides on the back of the watch.

Laurent Ferrier Tourbillon Grand Sport view
A pleasant combination between a classic elegant watch and sports watch elements

Laurent Ferrier Tourbillon Grand Sport

A sports watch with tourbillon? But why and how? – You might ask… We live with the impression that the tourbillons are that desired but fragile complication. But times have changed. Now the technology permits the creation of more robust components. Your dear tourbillon included. Plus, Richard Mille did it. Moser & Cie did it. TAG Heuer as well, Hublot etc. By now, the public must be used to the idea of a sports tourbillon. Maybe the fact that a sports watch comes from Laurent Ferrier is confusing.

Laurent Ferrier Tourbillon Grand Sport
The beautiful case is also a novelty for the brand.

A friendship founded on the track (excerpt from the official press release)

Laurent Ferrier is best known today as a master independent watchmaker, but rewind 40 years to the 1970s and his name was more likely to be seen on the roster of some of the most prestigious motor races. He competed in the legendary 24 Hours of Le Mans seven times, coming first in the two-litre prototype category in 1977.

It was during this period that he met a fellow driver and industrialist François Servanin. The two men shared a passion for both speed and mechanics which cemented their friendship and in 1979 they raced together behind the wheel of a Porsche 935T from the Kramer racing team, coming an overall third in the competition. Their performance was all the more remarkable considering that many of their competitors were professional Formula 1 drivers.

The two gentlemen’s love for mechanics never waned, leading them to form the Laurent Ferrier watch brand in 2009. Today they remember the beginning of their friendship and motor racing adventures with this brand-new limited edition Tourbillon Grand Sport that captures the spirit of 1970s motor racing.

Laurent Ferrier Tourbillon Grand Sport
An unusual colour for the Superluminova and a rubber strap – the Tourbillon Grand Sport is simply transformed from a dressier watch to a sports piece

Expect the unexpected…

I was lucky to see the watch before its official launch. The photographed piece is a prototype. Unfortunately, the images do no justice to this timepiece. As usual, I will add, at the end of the article the images, including the official ones from the press release.

The 44 mm steel case is a composition of shapes and finishes with some delicate details. Even if this is a sports watch, the Tourbillon Grand Sport has the delicacy and the nice details of the more classical piece of Laurent Ferrier.

Laurent Ferrier Tourbillon Grand Sport
An interesting construction adorned with a pretty onion-shaped crown.

The shape reminds me of the Galet Square, it is somehow familiar. But now, the square cushion-shaped bezel tops a slight tonneau shaped body. The bezel features a brushed top and a mirror polished edge. The body includes a crown protection. It is nicely integrated into the case design. I find the polished chamfering graceful. The way it surrounds the lugs and grows at the middle of the case – charming. The overall brushing suits well the sporty watch.

The Tourbillon Grand Sport is fitted with a rubber strap and a folding clasp. The wear is comfortable. It looks well on the wrist. I am a bit unfamiliar with this choice of colours. Looks good tough…

Laurent Ferrier Tourbillon Grand Sport strap
A folding clasp and a rubber strap proper for a sports watch. I wonder if the final design will have something engraved on the clasp. It looks nice, but a bit empty.

The dial has an unusual set of colours. The brown gradient with nickel opaline in the centre is adorned with orange accents on the indexes and hands. This combination is rarely used, if never. If someone will tell me about this combo, I will tend to say that is an unhappy solution. Seeing it on the Tourbillon Grand Sport, I find it captivating. The low light, change the watch’s appearance dramatically, in a good way, of course. But hard to demonstrate without a #watchesunderthetable shot.

Laurent Ferrier Tourbillon Grand Sport
A dial full of details: gold indexes and hands with orange Superluminova, sunken small seconds sub-dial, gradient decorative background

Particular attention was given to the indexes and to the hands. The applied hour indexes are manufactured in white gold and filled with Superluminova. The edges are bevelled.

The gold hours and minutes’ hands have an ‘’Assegai-shape’’ and are filled with orange Superluminova. Similar with alpha-shaped hands, but much more rounded. The finishes on these elements are lovely.

Laurent Ferrier Tourbillon Grand Sport
The details on the hours’ indexes and hands

The minutes’ chapter ring and the small seconds’ track, as well as the brand’s logo, are printed in a light grey. The name of the watch is also printed on the lower side in darker grey ink. A charming combination.

Despite the orange accents that reveal the sporty note of the watch, the dial is rather elegant.

Laurent Ferrier Tourbillon Grand Sport
The movement received a ruthenium treatment that confers a nice grey shade.

By turning the watch, you are introduced in the wonderful world of Laurent Ferrier construction and finishes. The hand-wound calibre features a gorgeous tourbillon with double balance spring.

Of course, the calibre is designed and produced in the brand’s workshops.

Laurent Ferrier Tourbillon Grand Sport
Unfortunately, the pictures do not reveal the tourbillon’s entire beauty. The magnificent cage and bridges are highlighted by the ruthenium treated mainplate and bridges.

The calibre construction is inspired by the major 19th-century chronometry models with their manual-winding system featuring a long-blade-type ratchet pawl system distinguished by the delicate mechanical clicking sound emitted during winding. The movement has been given a horizontal satin-brushed finish with a ruthenium touch for a sportier allure and has been finished with extreme care, as evidenced by the manual decoration on the tourbillon carriage bridge. The design of the bridges is inspired by pocket-watches and the decoration is executed in keeping with the finest watchmaking traditions, including 30 hand-crafted interior angles. – Excerpt from the official press release.

… and prepare to be amazed!

Laurent Ferrier Tourbillon Grand Sport is a great timepiece. Regardless of sporty or not, depending on which detail you focus your attention, the watch is well constructed and exceptional decorated. The combinations of a classical movement construction with modern elements, elegance and sportiveness, found a good host in this watch. Intrigued at first by the colour thematic, it started to grow on me. I am captivated by the idea of turning a front well-behaved watch to the back and see the horological beast that hides inside. Definitively not a watch for show-offs.

Laurent Ferrier Tourbillon Grand Sport
The Tourbillon Grand Sport is a lovely sports watch that features incredible haute horlogerie finishes and hides a great secret – a gorgeous tourbillon.

Laurent Ferrier Tourbillon Grand Sport Technical Specifications

Numbered edition of 12 pieces, Ref. LCF041

Technical details

MOVEMENT:

  • Manual winding
  • Diameter: 14’’’ (Ø 31.60 mm)
  • Thickness: 5.57 mm
  • Frequency: 3Hz (21600 vibrations/hour)
  • Power reserve: 80 hours
  • 188 mechanical parts / 23 jewels
  • Hours and minutes in the centre
  • Small seconds at 6 o’clock on tourbillon frame pivot
  • Tourbillon rotating cage visible through a sapphire case back
  • Horizontal satin brushed bridges with a ruthenium treatment

TOURBILLON FEATURES

  • Tourbillon, opposite double balance spring
  • “Swiss” lever escapement
  • Balance at variable geometry, with screw
  • Tourbillon frame carrier in the periphery

Technical characteristics

Case:

  • Stainless steel
  • Dimensions: 44 mm
  • 3 parts, middle, bezel and bottom hooked
  • Sapphire bottom, tourbillon movement vision
  • Water resistant at 100 meters
  • Tinted sapphire glass
  • Satin finishing on the sides and polished bezel
  • Sporty bolts on the case back

Dial:

  • Brown gradient with nickel opaline in the centre
  • Small second at 6 o’clock
  • Indexes: 18K/750 210Pd white gold with orange Superluminova

Hands:

  • 18K/750 210Pd white gold
  • Hours and minutes: ‘’Assegai-shaped’’ with orange Superluminova
  • Seconds: baton-type

Strap:

  • Taupe, folding clasp
  • Rubber strap

 

For more information, please visit the Laurent Ferrier Website.

By |2019-05-09T15:44:18+00:00May 9th, 2019|News|0 Comments

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