A quarter of an hour of Belgianness!
By way of festive fireworks, Raidillon announces the arrival of ten new models: five chronos and five “three-hands” in the same style. “The racing design comes back 100%”, specifies Patrick -Gelder, who has been at the managerial wheel since last year.
Something to reassure aficionados of the brand founded by Bernard Julémont in 2001 for the love of the Spa-Francorchamps circuit: it was its most famous bend, the Raidillon, which gave him the desire to create a watch collection. Since then, the name of this uphill bend, capable of providing thrills to the greatest champions, accompanies the number “55” on each dial.
-ci indicates the numerus clausus that the brand imposes on itself to publish each model and alludes to the number of cars previously authorized to take the start of F1 races at Spa-Francorchamps. There is no question of changing this tradition that smells of bitumen!
©RaidillonBelgian in essence but “Swiss made”, Raidillon indicates that it has however changed engine: the robust Valjoux 7750 gives way to its exact counterpart, the automatic SW500 caliber from the Swiss movement manufacturer Sellita. The three-hands are entitled to another well-honed mechanism, the SW200. Raidillon has also taken a new turn by returning to traditional distribution among multi-brand watchmakers. “We aim to multiply our points of sale throughout Belgium”concludes Patrick Gelder.
Born in 1931, the Pontiac brand tickles in the collective memory of Belgians. If its good-quality classicism has stood the test of time, its niche is evolving smoothly. “Today we want to start creating watches that are a little different”, explains the team, based in Walloon Brabant. The two collectors created for the F1 Grand Prix of Spa-Francorchamps 2022 are the roaring proof of this. Pleasantly sporty chic, the black or midnight blue dial features the layout of the mythical circuit. The numerals, as legible as they are elegant, are covered in a sand beige vintage luminescent coating.
To power this “Swiss made” edition, Pontiac chose the SW200 Sellita automatic caliber. The 60 copies (available around August 10) may be quickly sold out! Without departing from its legendary accessibility, the brand has been innovating since last year with resolutely horological dials.
The three-hand Eric features a large date (nine versions for 700 copies at 279 euros), the Victor is a “day-date” offered with a leather strap, steel links or gun metal (eleven versions, 1,000 copies, 279 euros). More surprising at this price level, the Monotime (279 euros) dares the great classicism of a single-hand dial. Its four versions total barely 300 copies! “We don’t produce a lot and that suits us very well”confides the team which is working on the project of a new collection and hopes soon to be able to develop a watch assembled in Belgium.
Pontiac will always remain Pontiac: its loyalty to quality also ensures that entry-level models (from 100 to 150 euros) have sapphire glass and a Swiss quartz movement.
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