Building on their official partnership, Aston Martin and Girard-Perregaux have jointly created a spectacular new timepiece, reimagining ‘the bridge’, one of the oldest mechanical signatures in watchmaking. A new addition to the famous Bridges collection, the Neo Bridges Aston Martin Edition showcases functional components often hidden from view and brings them to the fore. Inspired by Aston Martin’s next generation of sportscars, designers took influence from the world’s first Super Tourer, DB12, with the new watch reflecting the car’s sculpted contours and sharp lines.
Blending beauty and engineering
Marek Reichmann, Executive Vice President and Chief Creative Officer, Aston Martin Lagonda remarks, “It was clear from the start of our relationship with Girard-Perregaux as our Official Watch Partner that we had a shared passion for precision and performance design. Our exchange of ideas about design details and specifications flowed openly, naturally, and the watches bearing our names have been authentically co-built through a shared spirit of true collaboration.
“In this latest model, the Neo Bridges Aston Martin Edition, the joint creative team – comprising designers from both companies – decided to challenge some commonly held horological conventions around the design of the movement. With due consideration given to structural rigidity, performance and beauty, I’m delighted with the result.”
The Neo Bridges Aston Martin Edition is the latest addition to the Swiss watchmaker’s Bridges collection, a range of models that has long been entwined with the company’s DNA. In 1867, Constant Girard sketched a pocket watch endowed with three parallel bridges. Unusually, these prominent bridges, essential components that form part of a movement’s structure, were refined and famously became design elements. However, while Girard-Perregaux is justly proud of its heritage it does not languish in the past, but wholeheartedly embraces the future, often uniting thought-provoking styling, cutting-edge materials and inventive mechanisms, something that is clearly manifest with the new Neo Bridges Aston Martin Edition.
A shared language
Aston Martin and Girard-Perregaux both speak the same language when it comes to luxury. They each understand the importance of consistent design while simultaneously seeking advancement. Underpinning this shared philosophy is a belief that mechanical components should arouse intense emotions.
The Neo Bridges Aston Martin Edition, a watch that perpetuates some of the design ideas found on former collaborative watches, also delivers a new, fresh-faced appearance, suffused with considered details. It eschews a conventional dial to reveal its inverted movement, the Calibre GP0840000-2164, a configuration that brings components usually found to the rear of the watch, relocating them to the front. Upholding the spirit of the Bridges collection, the functional components on this model contribute to its overall visual allure. The Neo-shaped bridges support the gear train and balance and the wearer is invited to witness several parts in conversation, working together to impart time. Upholding Girard-Perregaux tradition, the arrangement of movement components confers symmetry, thereby delivering a harmonious appearance.
Skeletonised baton-type indexes proclaim the hours and minutes. Inspired by the automotive world where extraneous material is removed to save weight, this watch dispenses with a conventional dial. The hands incorporate luminescent material which bestows a green emission in restricted light, a colour that will forever be associated with Aston Martin. The suspended indexes, located on a ring encircling the dial, project outwards and are lined with luminescent material which again appear green in dim conditions. Both the design of the hands and indexes uphold the styling of previous dual-branded watches. In between each index, crisp green markings, positioned on the aforesaid ring, denote each minute in lucid form. Endowed with two Neo bridges, executed in Aston Martin Green, the design pays tribute to Constant’s 19th century creation, albeit realised in a contemporary form, while the colour of the bridges honours Aston Martin and its rich history of crafting high-performance cars.
Power is essential
Power is a prerequisite for performance, something that is evident within any creation bearing the names Aston Martin and Girard-Perregaux. A barrel, effectively the fuel tank of the watch, is positioned at 1.30. It’s supported by a black openworked bridge and bears the name of the Swiss Manufacture. This watch is automatic, harvesting energy from the natural motion of the wearer’s wrist, using a small oscillating weight, termed a micro-rotor. The dimensions of the micro-rotor contribute to the movement’s slender profile, just 5.45mm in . Furthermore, it also affords unhindered views of the movement. In this instance, the micro-rotor is engraved with the name of the British luxury marque, sharing equal status with the Manufacture’s name gracing the barrel. When designing the barrel and micro-rotor, the joint creative team took inspiration from the brakes which are revealed behind Aston Martin DB12’s spoked wheels, showcasing sharper lines and extra openings.
A play with colour
Colour is a useful means of accentuating shapes, imbuing sculptural forms with light and shade, emotion and passion. Appraising the Neo Bridges Aston Martin Edition, brushed greys, vibrant rubies, brooding blacks and silver-coloured wheels unite to impart time while simultaneously stirring the soul. Most notably, the Aston Martin Green Neo Bridges reveal different tones as they engage with light. Endowing the bridges with colour while maintaining their alluring three-dimensional appearance was technically challenging.
The lightweight case, measuring 45mm in diameter, is formed of titanium dressed in a suit of black DLC. Effortlessly stylish, it plays a deferential role to the watch’s display, allowing both static and dynamic movement components the opportunity to shine.
A DB12 for the wrist
Peruse the sinuous contours of the Aston Martin DB12, the world’s first super tourer and its intent is clear: to cover great distances in comfort while making each mile a thrilling and memorable experience. The Neo Bridges Aston Martin Edition shares the same philosophy. Each contour and every facet are the result of protracted thought, intended to deliver performance and a sublime wearer experience. The various materials have been combined to ignite the soul and seduce the wearer with their tactile feel. For example, the strap is black rubber with a fabric effect and is enlivened with green stitches. Fitted with a titanium DLC triple folding buckle, the strap not only cossets the wrist wonderfully but also looks stunning.
Matching the scarcity and exclusivity of an Aston Martin model, the Neo Bridges Aston Martin Edition will be a rare sight, limited to just 250 pieces. The model goes on sale in December 2023 and will be available worldwide in all authorised Girard-Perregaux retailers.