Angus Davies reviews the Roger Dubuis Excalibur Automatic, a watch that looks stunning when presented in rose gold.
In the world of haute horology antecedents, ancestry, established traditions are revered. Most of the great names have a long and honourable past. ROGER DUBUIS has recency not a long history, only established in 1995, but although a newcomer it has accepted the principles of haute horology, shown respect for them and met all the exacting standards and criteria set to challenge those who wish to achieve Hallmark of Geneva status. It has earned his place at the round table.
All his movements are produced in accordance with the criteria of the Poinçon de Genève.
The manufacture rests on the skills of talented individuals. The four collections Excalibur, Monegasque, Pulsion and Velvet have been created by Georges Kern and Roger Dubuis, a master watchmaker. Together they accord dynamism, vivacity, a new momentum in design which is effectively coupled with horological skill and expertise. To have achieved so much in such a short time frame is remarkable.
The Excalibur Automatic
This addition to the Excalibur range is bold in its design. Bearing the Excalibur name it has to be. It has to hold fast tradition. It has to accord with the rules of engagement for haute horology but it must also dazzle. In rose gold it is quite stunning.
The dial has strong visual impact. The heavy black roman numerals radiate forcefully, dramatically from the centre, their strong lines masked at 9 o’clock by a very simple but quite big small seconds dial. At 12 o’clock the numbers are reduced in size to accommodate the name of ROGER DUBUIS. The numbering is so powerful and yet so simple, so uncluttered so in harmony. The chapter ring is simple. The hour markers align with the apexes of the triangular indentations in the exterior flange. The dauphine hands appropriately echo the blades of swords.
The pink gold case has a visual strength that holds the eye. The triangular indentations around the exterior flange are sharply cut and extend the gaze outwards. Described as ”sunray” it frames the dial with its strong features in a way that allows the face to gain attention but not to overpower the presence of the beautifully crafted case. Without the sunray effect the dial and case would not be in balance. The dial would be too dominant.
The triple lugs, characteristic of the Excalibur collection are set wide and again this achieves a sense of balance and strength.
The crown is simple, sturdy, with a fluted bezel, signature indented, not deflecting the gaze from the case and dial.
It is 42 mm in diameter.
Within the case there rests the RD 620 calibre. This mechanical movement with automatic micro rotor winding is an exemplar of modern watch technology and provides a welcome addition to the collection. It is hand assembled, incorporates 184 parts, 35 jewels and can be viewed through the sapphire crystal back.
It meets the manufacturers statement that “Every movement is crafted with a specific watch casing in mind to ensure absolute integration of purpose, aesthetics, and spirit”.
Fittingly, bearing proudly the Hallmark of Geneva, it has Côtes de Genève decoration and circular graining.
The strap, so solidly held, is of black alligator and predictably in a watch where such care has been lavished on its assembly, it is hand-stitched. Its fastening is with a rose gold folding buckle.
It is also water resistant to 30 metres.
This watch lives up to its name which evokes a chivalrous age when boldness was a virtue and tradition was honoured.
Model: ROGER DUBUIS Excalibur Automatic in pink gold
Case: 18-carat pink gold; 42.00 mm diameter; Poinçon de Genève, sapphire crystal to front and back.
Functions: Hours; minutes; subsidiary seconds.
Calibre: Frequency 28,800 vph (4Hz); power reserve 52 hours; water resistance 3 bar (30 metres); Côtes de Genève decoration; 35 jewels; 184 parts.
Calibre Reference: Roger Dubuis RD620
Strap: Black alligator leather strap; hand stictched; on pink gold deployant.