The First Watch With A Built-In Speedometer Is Absurdly Wonderful

The First Watch With a Built-In Speedometer Is Absurdly Wonderful

As smartwatches gain more and more functionality, they're also gaining popularity. So it's more important than ever for makers of traditional mechanical watches to pack as many novel features into their creations as they can, like Breva, which has actually found a way to squeeze a pop-up speedometer into its new Génie 03. Say what?

The First Watch With a Built-In Speedometer Is Absurdly Wonderful

Figuring out how fast you're moving is easy for some smartwatches; they just need to lock onto a GPS signal while you're en route. But it's not quite as easy when the watch is only full of gears and springs. To pull this off the pop-up mechanism on the Génie 03 — which raises about a centimetre above the watch's face when engaged — actually functions like a miniature anemometer to use the speed of the wind to determine the wearer's speed.

The First Watch With a Built-In Speedometer Is Absurdly Wonderful

Just below the dial displaying the speed in kilometres per hour is a spinning set of Robinson cups that are used to determine how fast the wearer is actually moving. So if you wanted to figure out how fast the car you were in was going, you'd need to stick your hand and wrist out the window to catch the air. Presumably that makes this most appealing to those whose convertibles have broken speedometers.

To ensure the watch's delicate mechanisms aren't destroyed when speeds approach 200km/h, the Robinson cups actually stop spinning at 50km/h, at which point a spring mechanism is engaged that continues to measure speed based on the strength of the wind alone.

When it comes to price, Breva's Génie 03 is still an obscenely expensive option for amateur watch enthusiasts. But at just shy of $US60,000 it's actually considerably cheaper than the $US132,000 Génie 02 and the $US150,000 Génie 01. So while smartwatches are still not the most stylish thing to strap to your wrist, it seems they might be encouraging the makers of fancy mechanical watches to be a little more competitive with their prices — but there's still a long way to go. [Breva via A Blog To Watch]


Comments

    That's pretty useless and arcaic in today's world. Definitely not not worth forking out that kind of money.

      This sort of thing is created for people to whom money has more or less ceased to matter, and for whom a genuine novelty is worth a fair bit for its own sake.

      I doubt they'll sell more than a few hundred of these (possibly even a few tens) but at $60k there's quite a lot of room for profit margin.

        Exactly this.This sort of thing is created for people to whom money has more or less ceased to matter, and for whom a genuine novelty is worth a fair bit for its own sake.

        I have quite an expensive watch (Not as expensive as that). Sure I could have bought a smartwatch but honestly being able to see the gears of my watch work and never having to recharge/replace a battery the thing is worth the price tag.

        I work in IT and I've never seen someone else who works in IT actually use a smart watch and on the flip side the people I have seen using one have never walked in to a meeting and been complemented on their awesome looking $300 smartwatch.

        Last edited 20/01/15 11:03 am

          Funnily enough I get more compliments on my Seiko 007 than I do my Tissot 516, which always surprises me. I don't think that either of those watches are more convenient than a quartz piece would be, but for me the character of a mechanical watch makes up for it and gives me more enjoyment.

          I guess I work in engineering. We are more practical people and laugh at the form over function gimmicks.
          This will tell you how fast you're going on what? You push bike?
          Not that there's anything wrong with that.
          Though we're more about our work so we don't really get down to complementing each others fashion accessories during meetings.

    The engineering is impressive but it seems overly complex for what I imagine is a small use case. And it's something you could also do with a tachymeter on many watches, although that needs a distance reference and a quick calculation.

    I have the money, I like the style but here is the deal breaker buddy..
    There is no wind where I go...Space :P

    But I still like what they have tried.

    obviously wind itself doesn't move... and obviously we all need to know how fast we are walking... and of cause, if we are driving (in Australia or any country that drives right, unless you wear your watch on your right then vice versa) the best way to check speed is to stick my 'LEFT" hand out the window to check speed as well.

    If they drop two zero's from the price I might consider buying one.

    So it's a windometer?

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