The World’s Most Complicated Watch is More Awesome Than You Can Imagine

Patek Philippe’s Calibre 89 is widely considered to be the most complicated watch ever created, featuring 33 unique complications. It’s been the standard of complexity in the industry for a while, but there’s finally a new time piece to take its mantle.

Celebrating its 260th anniversary, Swiss manufacture Vacheron Constantin—one of watchmaking’s “Big Three”— officially unveiled its Reference 57260. With a remarkable 57 complications, the pocket watch that took eight years to develop claims the title of the world’s most complicated watch.

vacheron-constantin-01The piece was constructed and conceptualized by a team of three people – codenamed ‘Tivoli’ – to make a watch with the traditional complications, like a moon-phase indicator, a star chart, and a regulator-style timekeeping display—but also some that have never been seen before in horology.

One of these imaginative features is the double retrograde split-second chronograph. Unlike traditional watches that you usually see, where the hands move in the same direction, the double-retrograde version’s hands rotate in opposite directions and snap back to their starting positions after completing a 60-second arc.

vacheron-constantin-03The dial on the reverse side of the watch has some funky functions; a 12-hour second time-zone display, a scale indicating the current Zodiac-sign period, and even sunrise and sunset time indicators.

vacheron-constantin-04There’s too many features to list in this complex piece – which was sold to its new owner for an estimated $8 million – but suffice it to say that Vacheron Constantin has created a truly unique and fascinating timepiece that pushes the boundaries of watchmaking.