Home » Urwerk’s History in Five Super High-End Watches

Urwerk’s History in Five Super High-End Watches


The UR-105 revisits URWERK’s iconic satellite indication, which has been an emblematic and instantly recognizable signature element of the brand. Image: Urwerk

Martin Frei and Felix Baumgartner, the creators of Urwerk, were early innovators in contemporary autonomous watchmaking and have since been collaborating for over 25 years. They have advanced horology’s limits with their crew by using futuristic aesthetics as well as unexpected complexities.

Although Urwerk’s designs are wholly “modern,” one of its most blatantly contemporary features is the owners’ interaction with each other. Martin, a trained artist, and Felix, a third-generation professional watchmaker, formed an odd team in the middle of the 1990s and collaborated on unique watches.

At a party during the early 1990s, Felix and Martin got to know one another through a common acquaintance. Martin saw that Felix seemed to be laser concentrated compared to the art school environment he was used to. He also found it surprising how focused watchmakers are on the product they are studying and creating. On the other hand, Felix quickly noticed Martin’s receptivity to ideas, curiosity, and innovation that continuously tries to go beyond the existing pattern of how things are built and how they look.

Frei and Baumgartner collaborated to start Urwerk in 1997 after realizing they both desired to build a solution for the horological industry’s future. Nonetheless, the brand has deep historic ties despite being formed to create avant-garde aesthetics and futuristic timepieces.

The German term “Uhrwerk,” which means clockwork, is a pun on the title Urwerk. The names “Ur” and “werk” are derived from Ur, a town in historic Mesopotamia in which time was originally conceptualized in its modern form.

Thus, Urwerk has been creating technologically innovative timepieces with excellent aesthetics since its founding about 25 years ago. The UR-Chronometry, the UR-Satellite, and the UR-Special Projects are the firm’s three watch lines.

Furthermore, Urwerk’s impressive collection has received global celebrity support. The brand has also captivated the horological industry with its future products that offer accuracy and scientific advancements by bringing the future nearer.

Overall, here’s a brief tour of the Urwerk’s modern history watches:

  1. UR-100

The Urwerk UR-100 will undoubtedly capture your attention. This is especially true if you’re mesmerized by the dark sky and wonder over your place in this enormously expansive cosmos.

The UR-100, which houses Urwerk’s satellite display, is driven by the UR 12.01 Self-winding Automatic Movement. Besides, it is controlled by Planetary Turbine Automated Mechanism. Distances traversed on Earth are shown as supplementary astronomical indicators.

Likely, these indications won’t be useful in our daily lives. However, they highlight that we only make up a little portion of the whole picture, which is always intriguing to consider.

Urwerk UR-100

  1. UR-105

Early in 2014, Urwerk unveiled the legendary UR-105 to substitute for the departing UR-103. The UR-105 was distinct from anything anyone had ever encountered when it was released. Moreover, it underwent a number of phases of development and research over the following 7 years, all with its personality.

The ‘Control Board,’ a trademark feature of Urwerk, can be found on this line of watches’ rear. It contains different displays and features, like the ‘Oil Change’ indication that warns you whenever it’s due for a change. It also has a 42-hour power reserve display and a fine-tuning lever for adjusting the pace.

The latest UR-105 comes in two different configurations: the Iron Knight, which has a steel bezel as well as a titanium casing, and the Dark Knight, which has a titanium casing yet an AlTin-coated steel bezel.

Urwerk UR-105

  1. UR-106

Urwerk, a timepiece brand renowned for avant-garde designs, excites watch lovers with its cutting-edge complexity. Their newest wristwatch for women is the UR-106. The construction of this series is highly inventive, while the design is whimsical.

The company’s distinctive satellite hours are present in this line’s watches but a never-before-seen configuration. Three satellite arms that each have four-hour numbers move, plus the minute dial to display the time both analogically and digitally.

In addition, these watches have a steel case as well as a crown made of titanium that sparkles with black diamonds. Besides, a distinctive satin treatment has been hand-applied to the carousel and satellites.

Urwerk UR-106

  1. EMC Time Hunter

This collection is built on the first timepiece with Electro-Mechanical Control (EMC). The company elevates its self-assigned role as the designer of quirkiness with the introduction of the Urwerk EMC Time Hunter. It’s remarkable that at that range, this series is the only one from the company to feature hour-plus minute indexes as a classic time display.

It’s difficult not to be fascinated by their newest product, which enhances the horological functionality of their prior Urwerk EMC Watch. It’s the very first automatic piece to feature a precise measuring mechanism and incorporates the capacity to determine balancing amplitude.

The watches in this line have a ton of surprises inside. A supercapacitor charges as the timepiece is wound by the huge, fold-away wound mechanism on the right part of the casing. It stores the electrical energy produced from mechanical sources.

The UR-EMC2, an internal caliber designed and created by Urwerk in Zurich, Switzerland, powers the Urwerk EMC Time Hunter. Despite having sophisticated features, the movement uses a conventional Swiss gear escapement and runs at a respectable 28,800 vph. Also, the company’s preferred material, ARCAP P40, which is incredibly stable as well as anti-magnetic, is used to make the balancing wheel.

Urwerk EMC Time Hunter

  1. UR-111C

The UR-111C deviates slightly from the rotating satellite concept for which the company is well known by using a brand-new type of time indicator. Two circular displays—jumping hours on the left with moving minutes on the right—along with a distinctive, retrograde-functioning minutes indication in the middle make up the “face” of the watch. In addition, the watches also have a leaping digital seconds indicator on the surface. This projects the numerals upward to the sapphire crystal aperture via a network of fiber optics.

Urwerk UR-111C

Conclusion 

To push the limits of what a manual timepiece can be has constantly been a goal of Urwerk. Martin Frei and Felix Baumgartner, the company’s pioneers, have continued to develop in regard to both aesthetics and mechanisms. Moreover, their brand is always rooted in the tradition of manufacturing.

 

 

Shop our favorite products

Subjects in this article: