Piaget Altiplano Ultimate: The Pinnacle of Ultra-Thin Watchmaking
A watch I have been meaning to cover for a while, the Piaget Altiplano Ultimate, showcased in 2018 as the Altiplano Ultimate Concept, it was turned into a commercially available masterpiece now simply known as the Piaget Altiplano Ultimate.
Retaining the ground-breaking slimness of the concept watch, the Altiplano Ultimate continues Piaget’s heritage of pushing boundaries in ultra-thin watchmaking into its most extreme embodiment yet.
An Ultra-Slim Breakthrough
In 2018, Piaget unveiled a watch that redefined perceptions of feasible dimensions – the Altiplano Ultimate Concept at 2mm thin. Once deemed too extreme for production, this border-pushing innovative timepiece is available from Piaget as the Altiplano Ultimate.
It retains the case and movement fused into a single integrated sandwich just 2mm thick. This razors the previous record of slimness in half to an almost unbelievable profile slimmer than a Swiss 5 franc coin.
After proving viability as a spectacular concept, Piaget brought the pinnacle of mechanical watch slenderness to market for collectors to enjoy.
Some key facts about Piaget’s record-shattering Altiplano Ultimate watch:
- Case and movement fused into a single 2mm thick component
- Manually-wound caliber with 44 hour power reserve
- Hours, minutes display integrated seamlessly into the profile
- Crafted from ultra-rigid cobalt alloy to maintain slimness
- Result of 5 filed patents and 4 years of dedicated R&D
- Showcased at SIHH 2018 to unveil this horological marvel
Excelling Where Few Dare to Tread
Two milestones underscoring Piaget’s pedigree in slender watchmaking include:
- 1957: Piaget Caliber 9P watch movement measuring just 2mm thick
- 1960: Caliber 12P, the world’s thinnest automatic movement at 2.3mm thick
Direct descendants of founder Georges Edouard Piaget continue this heritage of pushing perceived boundaries of plausible slimness. This distinct dedication has amassed Piaget an unrivalled 20+ records in ultra-slim watches and movements.
The Altiplano Ultimate represents the current peak of this specialized journey toward extreme refined elegance.
Radically Engineered for Extreme Thinness
Pushing boundaries of feasibility, Piaget engineers and watchmakers spent 4 years securing patents and miniaturizing components to yield the remarkable 2mm profile of the Altiplano Ultimate .
To enhance rigidness at this scale, an ultra-resistant cobalt alloy forms the fused case and movement. The two main plates contain the movement on top and case back underneath to sandwich the integrated time display and movement parts between.
The manually-wound caliber 900P-UP powering this concept contains ground-breaking tweaks miniaturizing parts to eliminate even factions of millimeters:
- Ball bearing-mounted components remove need for bridges
- Barrel integrated into case back recess without cover or drum
- Cantilevered regulating organ suspended on ball bearings alone
- Patented micro-components like the barrel arbor construction
- Innovative endless screw winding mechanism
The extreme degree of engineering allows the caliber to retain impressively 44 h reserve
Water resistance retains 30m rating, and a matching alligator strap with folding buckle complements the polished slim watch.
Perfected Finishing Touches
In addition to the praiseworthy 2mm thinness and technical ingenuity, Piaget lavishes finishing refinement onto the Altiplano Ultimate uniting over 140 years of watchmaking excellence.
Traits like the curved linear hours and minutes track seamlessly integrated into the profile exhibit subtle style balancing intrigue with elegance.
Meanwhile, chamfered and circular grained bridges contrast beautifully against the mainplate’s sunburst finish across the dial side. More visible mechanics through the case back dazzle too.
This fusion of edgy modern edge blended with classical dress watch poise makes the Altiplano Ultimate a versatile ultra-slim suited to various occasions. It melds avant-garde and traditional watchmaking prowess.
Availability of the Thinnest Watch Ever
While the Altiplano Ultimate Concept served to showcase Piaget’s feats in slenderness, the Maison now privileges collectors by making the 2mm marvel shopable in strictly limited quantities.
Just a few pieces are produced each year from Piaget’s manufactures upholding the brand’s exacting standards to ensure each is perfected before reaching customers.
Available across select Piaget boutiques in major cities internationally, the Altiplano Ultimate comes in 18k white or rose gold options with prices on application reflecting its exclusivity and specialty.
Boasting the world record title as the thinnest mechanical watch ever made, the Altiplano Ultimate brings acclaim to Piaget for pushing perceived boundaries – now on the wrists of a few fortunate collectors.