SIHH 2011 Preview

"Every Bugatti is in a certain way an art object, from its
dashboard to its tooling to its engine. Every detail on the car
is like fine art, or maybe I should say like a very fine watch."
– Ralph Lauren


Ralph Lauren has long looked to automobiles as a source of inspiration for his designs. From a chair created utilizing the same carbon fiber used in one of his race cars, to a luggage line inspired by the sleek black, urban sensibility of another sports car, the designer has time and again infused his collections with elements from the automotive world.

For 2011, Ralph Lauren presents the first timepiece inspired by his personal car collection, with the introduction of a Ralph Lauren Sporting watch featuring a wood dial. Combining his passion for fine automobiles with his passion for fine timepieces, Ralph Lauren unveils this new timepiece design recalling the refined interior of his model 1938 Bugatti Type 57SC Atlantic Coupe.

The new Ralph Lauren Sporting timepiece features a stainless steel case with a unique dial in rich loupe d’orme or elm burl–in honor of this car’s iconic wooden dashboard and trim detail. Elm burl is a hallmark of elegance and quality in carpentry. Prized for its highly figured patterns and rarity, this wood has been traditionally used by artists and sculptors and is often found in the consoles of luxury automobiles.

The warmth of the wood is contrasted by the dial’s matte black galvanic center and by the black calf leather strap, reminiscent of the distinct juxtaposition of the wooden dashboard and black leather seating in Ralph Lauren’s prized vintage automobile. True to the car’s original dials, this watch displays Arabic numerals for enhanced readability. Sword-shaped hands tell the hour and minutes–marked by an open railroad-style track, while the seconds are indicated by an arrow-shaped hand and closed railroad-style track within the subdial at 6 o’clock. The bezel and dial are accented by functional screws, while the crown displays the iconic RL initials logo.

Showcasing both beauty and functionality, the Ralph Lauren Sporting watch combines a one-of-a-kind and sophisticated aesthetic with the precision of a manual winding mechanical movement–caliber RL98295 made by IWC for Ralph Lauren–featuring a power reserve of 45 hours. As with all Ralph Lauren Sporting Collection models, this timepiece features a sapphire crystal case back, revealing the movement’s Côtes de Genève and Perlage finish work on the plate.
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