Haute Horlogerie

The Manufacture

The Manufacture

The Swiss region of Le Locle and its surrounding valleys, La Chaux-de-Fonds, the valley of Saint Imier and the Bienne Region, have been particularly active in the manufacture of top-quality watches for the past 200 years. A large number of workshops, specialised in the manufacture of pocket-chronographs since the late 19th century and later producing wristwatches, are located in this region. The Montblanc Haute Horlogerie Manufactures located in Villeret and Le Locle are among those still active in this business today.

The master watchmakers in these two workshops are committed to preserving traditional Swiss watchmaking at the very highest level, creating innovative timepieces of the utmost precision, perfection and durability.
 


Craftsmanship

Craftsmanship

Montblanc watches are masterpieces produced in limited editions, or as unique items patiently and meticulously elaborated by horologists highly skilled in the supreme art of watchmaking.

The master watchmakers of the Montblanc Manufacture combine the brand’s values with genuine Swiss watchmaking precision and thus harmonise perfectly with the company’s high expectations concerning craftsmanship and quality standards.
 


The TimeWriter Concept

The TimeWriter Concept

Les Gardiens du temps

The Montblanc Manufacture in Villeret is one of the last ones where a large portion of the traditional horological skills, with all their micromechanical refinements, are still meticulously performed by hand – almost as though each timepiece were individually crafted as a one-of-a-kind item. With the founding of the “Institut Minerva de Recherche en Haute Horlogerie”, Montblanc set out to safeguard this extraordinary heritage. The experts at the Institut Minerva are concentrating, on the one hand, on the preservation and cultivation of the legendary chronographic expertise, but also the high art of horology in accord with the authentic Swiss tradition and, on the other hand, on the ongoing development of innovative technologies and concepts to ensure a bright future for the art of watchmaking.

This philosophy is beautifully embodied in the timepieces of the Montblanc Collection Villeret 1858. The mission of the Institut Minerva is to foster young talents whose new ideas will enrich the art of watchmaking, which they will enliven with their innovative spirit and dynamism. For this purpose, Montblanc created the TimeWriter concept, under which the company introduces projects with independent creators who have great ideas and plan to establish themselves as independent watchmakers.

 


The Montblanc TimeWriter I: Metamorphosis

Robots that can be turned into human-like figures, cars, aeroplanes and other objects were the inspiration for Franck Orny and Johnny Girardin to develop the Montblanc Metamorphosis.

A complete novelty in haute horlogerie: a watch with two faces and two different functionalities, that was created by the master watchmakers of Montblanc’s Manufacture in Villeret under the TimeWriter scheme.

The first face of the Metamorphosis is that of a classical watch, the second face is that of a sporty monopusher chronograph. In between are 15 seconds in which a patented mechanism allows the occurrence that unites the two watches in such a unique way: the Metamorphosis.

The transformation is enormously complex, and involves about 50 individual components moving technically simultaneously.


The Montblanc TimeWriter II: Chronographe Bi-Fréquence 1.000

The Montblanc Manufacture in Villeret has a long history of devising clever ways to measure brief intervals of time. Albert Einstein’s standard reference work about the relationship between space and time was published in Bern in 1916. That same year and just a few kilometres away, the watch manufacture introduced a stopwatch that could measure elapsed intervals to the nearest 100th of a second. Each in its own way, these two nearly simultaneous events went on to revolutionise our understanding of time: decades later, this chronograph inspired another innovation in the art of measuring brief intervals: Montblanc’s TimeWriter II Chronograph Bi-Fréquence 1,000.

This watch appears to contradict the laws of pure science. A childhood memory of a rolling hoop inspired Barto Gomila to develop an innovative chronograph mechanism, which was created by the master watchmakers of Montblanc’s Manufacture in Villeret under the TimeWriter scheme.

Conventionally, a frequency of 500 Hz is necessary to capture a thousandth of a second in a mechanical watch, but this ingenious chronograph accurately measures down to the 1/1000th of a second with a frequency of only 50 Hz. With minimised wear and friction, the watch sets new standards with regard to precision, regularity and long-lasting power reserve.


The Watchmakers

The Watchmakers

The elevated art of Montblanc's watchmaking has at its core intrinsically human qualities embodied by the artisans behind every timepiece – qualities such as creativity, a passion for the art of traditional watchmaking combined with constant innovation and a reverence for the value of time.

It is these core values characterising the brand Montblanc – in association with the watchmakers' knowledge that is handed down from generation to generation – that come to the fore in the exquisite watches expressing remarkable individuality and craftsmanship.