Once again, Jacob & Co. wows us with its watchmaking prowess and cool design aesthetic. This time, the brand takes inspiration from a mythical Bugatti car gone missing — and the end result is a startling $1 million watch. It was just last year that Jacob & Co. signed a deal with Bugatti to create co-branded timepieces — resulting in the unveiling of several new watches. Now, Jacob & Co presents the Twin Turbo Furious Bugatti La Montre Noire — in honor of the black version of the Bugatti Type 57 SC Atlantic Coupe from the 1930’s that mysteriously disappeared. The unique watch is crafted in 18-karat blackened gold and set with 22.97 carats of black sapphires. What’s under the hood is just as incredible as the exterior — and worthy of the car it honors.
Around 1940, Bugatti shipped the four different color versions of the Bugatti Type 57 SC Atlantic Coupe from its workshops in Molsheim, France, to the factory in Bordeaux to keep them safe from the Nazis. When the cars arrived, the La Voiture Noire (the black car), was not part of the shipment. To this date, it has never been found, and if it were, experts put the value of it at more than $100 million. A 2019 one-off tribute to the “mystery” car was built by Bugatti last year and sold for more than 11 million Euro.
In honor of that original single unique car (and to the tribute car), Jacob & Co. and Bugatti emulates the black beauty in a format perfect for the wrist. The Twin Turbo Furious La Montre Noire Bugatti Edition is crafted entirely in 18-karat white gold that is blackened. Additionally, the watch uses natural black baguette-cut sapphires instead of the less expensive black diamonds that many brands use. The angular 88-part watch case is invisibly set with 344 stones weighing nearly 23 carats. The invisible setting showcases sapphire next to sapphire, with no metal visible. The blackened gold and blackened titanium deployant buckle is set with 18 black sapphires.
The mechanical engine of the watch – visible from front (which is devoid of a dial) and from the case back – is incredibly complicated and boasts 832 individual components – most of which have been blackened. The Manufacture Jacob & Co. manual winding JCFM05 caliber showcases two triple-axis tourbillons that rotate at different accelerated speeds and are designed to compensate for errors in timekeeping due to the effects of gravity when the watch is in different positions on the wrist.
In addition to defying gravity, the watch also is equipped with a decimal minute repeater that chimes the time at will using hammers (seen at 12:00 on the main dial ring) and gongs. Instead of chiming the hours and quarter hours, though, it chimes the hours, the 10-minute increments past the hours, and the minutes past the last 10-minute interval. The chiming system features a patented Double Mechanical Safety feature so that the sequence is not interrupted. At the 6:00 position, a power reserve indicator hand moves slowly across an arc from large boxes to smaller boxes to showcase the diminishing 48 hours of power. This is made possible via an ingenious planetary system.
Jacob & Co further chocked the watch with a highly precise monopusher column-wheel chronograph equipped with a “reference time” indicator inspired by the racing pit boards. The minutes of the chronograph are displayed in the upper dial ring at 6:00 and the seconds are shown at 12:00. The bold red Bugatti logo is front and center on the one-of-a-kind watch. With the mysterious beauty of this watch, one has to wonder what other colors Jacob & Co. may eventually present. Currently, it is expected that with all of the bells and whistles in this watch, it is destined to be a true collector’s watch.