The luxury watch market is a really big pond with a great number of players, and these days it’s getting harder to stand out from the pack.
While big box brands are busy issuing different dial colors to crank out as many new watches as possible, innovative independent brands like HYT are reinterpreting modern watchmaking and showing collectors and enthusiasts new means of indicating time.
For example, we’ve seen URWerk use a satellite-inspired time display and Christophe Claret use magnets (risky in regards to accuracy) to move balls through sapphire tubes. And then there’s HYT—a brand that started out as a medical technologies research firm and whose first watch was merely meant to be an exposition piece to showcase the then-new precision fluid delivery technology.
The original has a conventional in-house, hand-winding mechanical caliber and a gear train that drives the minute subdial and running seconds. A cam drive operates a piston, which pushes a set of bellows that very slowly drives fluid around the track to the six o’clock mark. Then all the fluid is drawn back into the bellows to start the trip all over again. Pretty cool, right? Here’s a closer look.
Fast forward from their launch in 2012 to present day, and the HYT line includes five different models, a total of 44 variations, a limited-edition piece for the legendary Axl Rose and this latest and boldest version of the H1—the Colorblock.
The Colorblock is based on the 2012 sensation that features a minute subdial at 12 o’clock and a fluid ring around its outer perimeter, indicating the hours using jet-black fluid. It’s available in yellow, blue and a very vibrant red, and these three new releases are limited to only ten units at a price of $38,000 each.
In the grand scheme of things, that’s a small price to pay for groundbreaking horology, no?