Angelus, producers of ultra high-end, technologically forward-thinking timepieces such as the U10, U21, and U22, have just announced their first diver’s watch. The Angelus U50 Diver Tourbillon is a 45mm wide, 300m water-resistant diver’s watch running on an in-house manufactured one-minute flying tourbillon with a skeletonized construction.
Beginning with the striking dial of the U50, if you can even say there is a dial, we are treated to a highly skeletonized handmade latticework with luminous hour markers on an outer flange, luminous rhodium plated hands accented with blue and yellow, and a small seconds indicator between the nine and ten o’clock positions, all of which are floating above and intertwined with the highly visible flying tourbillon movement.
A 45mm wide titanium case with twin screw down crowns and an anti-reflective coated sapphire crystal work in concert to facilitate the necessary water resistance for the ornate workings within, and allows for Angelus’ argument that the U50 could, in fact, serve as a sub-aquatic companion. An internal bezel, operated by the two o’clock crown, is unidirectional and in a blue and yellow color scheme to match the rest of the watch. An almost obligatory exhibition caseback allows the viewer to look through the watch entirely while viewing all the mechanical goodness you’ve purchased for a paltry thirty thousand or so US dollars.
The Angelus U50’s A300 one minute flying tourbillon is, of course, the star of the show here, with 23 jewels, a 55 hour power reserve, time, date, and small seconds functions, and a familiar 28,800 rate of oscillation. With a black gold treated balance wheel, gear train wheels featuring Angelus’ own highly rigid six spoke design, and a mirror polished and chamfered tourbillon cage, the U50 sits deeply entrenched in the world of haute horology.
While the innovative people at Angelus are no stranger to exotic materials, tourbillon calibers, or wild designs, the U50 is the brand’s first attempt a watch with a tech-forward horological pedigree as well as a hopefully hearty helping of durability to match the 300m water resistance rating.
While it shouldn’t need to be said how ridiculous it is to build a tourbillon powered diver’s watch, most especially with an internal bezel which requires unscrewing a crown to operate and therefore endangering the movement, you have to hand it to Angelus for doing what they do, engineering modern marvels in watch design simply for the sake of doing so. While no diver will ever purchase the U50 for diving, Angelus’ efforts to build a robust ocean faring tourbillon are still an interesting argument for what the Swiss watch industry is capable of when the gloves are off. The Angelus U50 is available for 29,700 CHF on a rubber strap with titanium buckle. angelus-watches.com