F.P. Journe Centigraphe Souverain: Independent Streak

In the Pantheon of wristwatch exclusivity, the F.P. Journe Centigraphe Souverain sits close to the oculus. Launched in late 2006 as a 2007 debut, the Centigraphe elevated rising star Francois-Paul Journe even further into the elite of high horology.

This 40mm platinum Centigraphe Soverain packs a formidable punch of audacious technology with the finest of traditional watchmaking craftsmanship.

At the Geneva atelier of F.P. Journe, a “good year” in the commercial sense translates to approximately 900 timepieces, or the equivalent of one slow day across town at Rolex.

The Centigraphe just exudes techno-cool. Any enthusiast who beholds the fireworks of three hands spinning at three different rates will feel a kind of elemental thrill. True to its name, the Centigraphe is equipped to measure intervals between 1/100th of a second and ten minutes. Each of the three sub-dials is equipped with a separate tachymeter scale that permits the reading of subject speeds between 36,000 and 6 kilometers per hour.

Journe equips the tachymeter scales with a highly polished 18-karat white gold frame inboard of a silver dial. The tapered blue hands of the Centigraphe are unique in high horology, and their graceful form has become as closely associated with Journe as the “Breguet” hands are with their legendary champion.

Beneath the silver dial lies a pot of gold; the manual-wind F.P. Journe caliber 1506 chronograph. Its 18-karat rose gold structure is a Journe signature that remains virtually unique to the micro-manufacture from Geneva. An 80-hour power reserve ensures excellent autonomy between windings when the chronograph is off. The chronograph’s parallel drivetrain, driven directly from the mainspring barrel, ensures no consequence to balance amplitude or timekeeping precision when the chronograph is running.

Journe gilds the lily and sets rivals on their heels with mechanical and aesthetic refinements worthy of his mounting legend. A free-sprung balance with Geneva-style stud holder adds a measure of sports watch resilience to the Centigraphe caliber 1506, and an impressively large balance compounds the timing stability. Finishing includes graceful concentric circular cotes de Geneve, tight engine-turned perlage on the base plates, subtly graining on all wheels, and black-polished screw heads.

The Centigraphe inspires the kind of childish awe that many wristwatch boffins felt when they witnessed James Bond’s magnetized Submariner or Dick Tracy’s wrist communicator in action for the first time. Even the chronograph reset, which cycles each indicator through a full rotation, will keep observers riveted.

With this Centigraphe Souveraine in platinum, available immediately through watchuwant.com, a discerning collector with a taste for the exotic and a penchant for rarity can draw the cordon and crash Journe’s Genevois party.

Watchuwant.com is pleased to offer this F.P. Journe Centigraphe Souverain in platinum in outstanding condition. See it in high-resolution images on www.watchuwant.com.