Just after entering 2020, H. Moser & Cie presented what they had been working on for 5 years: a totally new construction in their portfolio of timepieces with one of the most important contemporary chronograph developments inside. As the well-known events completely disarranged the carefully created annual plans, the model could only be seen in highly limited capacities throughout the year. Approaching to the most likely similarly disheveled 2021 (with much experience yet many outstanding challenges to solve), H. Moser & Cie showcased the blue edition of the Moser Streamliner Flyback Chronograph Automatic on 16 November. We spent a very happy long weekend in the company of the novelty before the premiere.
The Streamliner is the fifth collection in the brand’s current portfolio and because it does not follow the typical round shape design, it is very ‘very rare’. In fact, it shares this corner of the palace with the Apple-shaped Moser Swiss Alp watch only. The relationship between design and content has always been a carefully curated branding decision at Moser. Elegantly reserved faces give very little hint of the mechanical complexity inside. The choice of extreme purity and minimalism could easily be a well-placed flip to loud luxury, but in any case, it has formed the image of Moser more than anything. The Streamliner collection is no different – it continues to value simplicity and unity over noise.
The H. Moser & Cie. Streamliner Flyback Chronograph Automatic won the Chronograph watch prize at the Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève (GPHG) on 12 November, 2020.
The initial Streamliner Flyback Chronograph Automatic came out back in January. The well-known black/grey fumé griffé (vertical brushed) dial appeared this time in an unusual cushion shaped steel case with an integrated bracelet. The November novelty welcomes the winter with a blue fumé sky.
Although new to Moser, there are a number of timepieces around with a steel cushion shape and integrated bracelet combo. As the two form one united design, getting the proportions right (especially with a cushion shape) is harder than it seems. Edouard Meylan’s team worked with designer Marcus Eilinger and their collaboration resulted in a watch that pleases the wrist and excites the eyes.
A few weeks ago, we had it on at various urban activities and I can firmly say that it is among the most comfortable complicated timepieces. It sits on the wrist barely noticeable and pulls back nicely under the sleeve when longing for privacy. The bracelet is ‘soft’ and flexible. The only reason you keep looking at it is to get lost in the light’s joyful dance on its surfaces and edges. Mr Eilinger and the Moser team did an excellent job in building up this dance floor with organic curves and alternating finishes on all sides. The confluence of the case and the bracelet is so smooth that it makes it hard to determine when one starts and the other ends.
From certain angles the dial becomes dark, at other times it is bright blue. There are alternating scales at the circumference with red accents which go in pair with the upper red chronograph seconds hand. The chronograph minute hand is in white just underneath with the same needle shape that makes reading the elapsed time easy. The hour and minute hands have rounded Globolight® inserts. They remind me of another icon of the Streamliner era, the Empire State Building.
The hands are perfectly superimposed and jump sharply thanks to the magnificent Calibre HMC 902, which is a modified version of Agenhor’s Agenograph. The previous versions of the movement appeared in the Fabergé Visionnaire Chronograph in 2017 and in the Singer’s Track 01. The movement was designed with the sole desire to enable a concentric display of the chronograph and time functions. For this reason, it follows an architecture different from traditional chronographs. The time components (2 barrels, going train, escapement and balance) surround the parts operating the chrono in the same level, which sit in the middle. In order to have an instantaneous engagement between the two the gears of the horizontal clutch are coated with a diamond-nickel composite for better friction. Both wheels also have a safety wheel vertically offset and with wide spaces between teeth, which normally do not come into contact. If for some reason the primary wheels should slip, they stop the unwanted movement. The beautiful 434 parts automatic movement can be observed in its full glory as the rotor is situated just under the dial.
As opposed to the Fabergé and Singer models, the chronograph hours indication was omitted which has lent an even more focused and simpler appearance to the watch.
The Streamliner design is novel not only for H. Moser & Cie. but in general too. Since January, it appeared already on a somewhat smaller time-only model at the Geneva Watch Days. Although meant for men, the 42.3 mm diameter steel chronograph does not look bulky on a woman’s wrist either. The collection could easily be a bestseller for the brand.
Photo credits: Loupiosity.com, Fruzsina Jelen for Loupiosity
All registered trademarks are property of their respective owners.
All rights reserved.