January 18, 2017
A Rebirth of Professional Watches
Paying tribute to Minerva’s extraordinary heritage, Montblanc takes a journey back to the glory days of motor racing with five new TimeWalker timepieces that capture the beauty, spirit and values of motorsport history. The rebirth of these professional watches showcases the performance and innovation of the new Montblanc TimeWalker collection.
Instruments of glory
The chronograph has been one of the most popular complications since its very beginnings. This innovative complication has become far more than a mechanical timing device – it is an instrument that enforces the gentleman’s code of fair play and good sportsmanship, becoming the witness and judge to almost every type of sporting competition. Of all the motor sports, car racing is the one that has always had an intricate link to the chronograph. The history of competitive driving and performance timing are so inseparable that one could not exist without the other. With the capacity to capture and record time for eternity, the chronograph has borne witness to some outstanding automotive sporting moments.
As the development of motor racing evolved through the 20th and 21st centuries, the chronograph became a symbol of fair competition and the ultimate reminder that victory can only ever be judged by true and accurately timed results.
Inspired by performance
The Montblanc TimeWalker Collection symbolizes the spirit of racing and harks back to these instruments of glory by offering a line of new professional watches for the modern performer that take their inspiration from Minerva’s outstanding history. The Minerva Manufacture was known as an exclusive workshop that produced high-quality instruments for measuring brief intervals of time with remarkable precision. The renowned “Rally Timer”, a stopwatch that was created to time motor racing with precision, is the perfect example of this heritage. Minerva watches were the reference in the field of horological innovation, with numerous patents registered over the years in the domain of precision timers, creating a legacy of savoir-faire.
Legitimacy of the past
Founded in 1858 in Villeret in the Saint-Imier Valley, Minerva has been a leading specialist in the fabrication of professional watches. From 1908, it was already successfully pursuing new technological challenges, such as the production of watches equipped with chronograph functions and highly accurate stopwatches that measured short intervals of time. The Manufacture developed stopwatches that could measure 1/5th of a second as early as 1911, rapidly increasing to 1/10th of a second. In this innovative spirit, in 1916, the Minerva Manufacture was one of the first to produce a high-frequency movement that could measure 1/100th of a second, a development that was further technically improved in 1936, putting Minerva on the map as the specialist of professional watches and stopwatches.
The new Montblanc TimeWalker collection combines these legendary timing instruments of the past with the spirit of motor racing, encapsulating the Minerva heritage, superb technology, masculine energy, highest performance and the style of the glory days of racing.
The results are evocative, vintage-themed though contemporary, and designed for modern performers who like to express their achievements, ambitions, masculinity, style and personality in their choice of wristwatch. Perfect for both business and leisure, the new Montblanc TimeWalker timepieces command respect and admiration and underline the confidence of those who wear them.
The new Montblanc TimeWalker collection represents a strong contemporary expression of the professional sport chronograph with a 43 mm case size that has become a standard size for Montblanc’s performance timepieces. From the case to the dial, from the movement to the complications, the collection focuses on masculine energy and a vintage-themed style, while combining performance, innovation, great legibility and robustness. Emblematic combinations of materials come into play in each of the models, such as high-tech black ceramic, satinated steel, titanium and rubber, highlighting the Maison’s creative spirit.
The aesthetic codes of the new Montblanc TimeWalker timepieces are directly rooted in the world of racing: satinated cases and semi-skeletonized horns with architecturally carved flanks, all inspired by the aerodynamic lines of the bodywork of classic cars. Iconic details include knurled finishing on the flank of the emblematic black ceramic bezel, as well as on the crowns and pushers, which are reminiscent of vintage car caps; smoked glass case backs inspired by the glass windows that reveal sporty V12 engines; and strap holes that pay tribute to vintage leather racing gloves. Clear legibility and visibility are achieved with strong contrasts of colour, three-dimensional counters inspired by vintage dashboards, precise scales and dauphine-shaped hands with SuperLuminova for the greatest readability and performance by day and night. For utmost precision, most of the TimeWalker timepieces feature an iconic central seconds hand coated in red with the tip crafted in the shape of the Minerva arrow.