Saying that the Tourbillon Souverain is the most important watch from F.P. Journe would be an understatement. F.P. Journe himself has been captivated by the tourbillon complication from a young age when he was still studying watchmaking and the first-ever wristwatch that he built, the one he presented in 1991 at Baselworld, was the original Tourbillon Souverain. When the brand was launched in 1999, the very first watch produced under Montres Journes was, as you might guess, the Tourbillon Souverain.
To celebrate the 20th anniversary of this emblematic model that started Montres Journes’ journey, F.P. Journe unveils its successor: the Tourbillon Souverain Vertical.
Right off the bat, the first thing you notice when looking at this new timepiece is the vertically positioned tourbillon cage which differs from the traditional horizontal one seen usually. Mr Journe says that the reasoning behind making it vertical is to keep the tourbillon’s functions constant whether the watch sits on its side or lies perfectly flat.
The tourbillon is also faster and makes a revolution in 30 seconds instead of the usual time of one minute, and is surrounded by a conical ring with a beautiful mirror polish which concentrates and reflects light onto the tourbillon.
If you look closely there is no real dial to speak of. What you might first identify as the dial are actually the bridges on the dial-side of the mainplate of the 18k rose gold movement. This is a direct nod to the original 1991 wristwatch that Mr Journe hand-built and presented at Baselworld which was built the same way. Here, in the Tourbillon Souverain Vertical, the “dial” is decorated with “Clous de Paris” guilloché and features two enamel subdials for the hours and seconds which are actually made of one single piece of enamel.
The movement is a new one for the Tourbillon Souverain Vertical and features an 80-hour power reserve while still keeping the remontoir d’égalité and deadbeat seconds complications that collectors have come to know and love. This new movement is now housed in a larger 42mm case and available in platinum or 18K rose gold.