Neoclassical lines and refined aesthetics have been a signature of Breguet design since the time of Abraham-Louis Breguet, who lived in an era when baroque exuberance was in fashion. The new Breguet Classique 5177 Grand Feu Blue Enamel is inspired by these neoclassical lines, and adds a fresh touch – the colour of the blued hands is transposed onto the dial, for an unprecedented deep blue grand feu enamel.
The hue of the dial is the colour obtained during the bluing of the Breguet hands. The colour needs to remain perfectly stable during firing, at over 800 degrees celsius. This is what is required to create a grand feu enamel, lending it its unique grain. The moon-tipped hands, made of rhodium-plated steel, stand out against the blue background, for excellent readability; the Arabic numerals, stars, diamond shapes and fleur-de-lis on the chapter ring are silvered and are larger in size, also aiding readability. Their relief is made from a delicate, powdered tracing, and the date figures are treated using the same process, in order to aid visibility, due to the positioning of the aperture that sits in a darkened lower level window. Breguet’s secret signature, also in enamel, appears at 6 o’clock. For all of its timepieces with an enamel dial, Breguet continues to use the calligraphy once drawn by Abraham-Louis Breguet.
Powered by the self-winding 777Q mechanical caliber, the Classique 5177 Grand Feu Blue Enamel has simple and useful functions: the central second hand and the date at 3 o’clock. Current technological advances such as the use of silicon for the lever and escape wheel optimize its chronometric reliability. The rotor, in engine-turned 18-karat gold, appears through the sapphire-crystal caseback. Each of the components – visible or invisible – is delicately finished by Breguet craftspeople with techniques such as chamfering, circular graining and brushing, or with the côtes de Genève.
The 777Q caliber fits into a slim 38mm case in white gold, with fluted sides. The lugs are welded and rounded toward the midnight blue alligator leather strap. An individual number is engraved on the back of each watch, marking it as unique to its owner. The owner can also have their name recorded in the Breguet registers, which have been kept since 1780. The watch has a power reserve of 55 hours, and is water-resistant to 30 metres.