If there was a checklist for creating a successful luxury timepiece in 2020, it would read something like “design-oriented stainless steel integrated bracelet sports watch with a blue dial.” Bulgari has been one of the most influential brands in the integrated bracelet sports watch space in recent years, especially with the release of the 100 meter rated Octo Finissimo Automatic Steel earlier in 2020, but for summer 2020 the brand has fully completed the hypothetical checklist at last – the Bulgari Octo Finissimo Automatic Steel is now available with a rich blue sunburst dial. While not revolutionary on its own, the new dial treatment helps to transform the steel Octo Finissimo into one of the most complete packages in this highly specialized niche.
By now, the 40mm stainless steel case of the Bulgari Octo Finissimo Automatic Steel is well on its way to becoming a modern style icon. The complex angular form is unmistakable, in no small part thanks to the razor thin 6.4mm overall depth. The new mix of brushed and polished surfacing introduced in early 2020 adds an extra layer of dynamism to this multifaceted shape, allowing light to play with its many angles much more aggressively. Like the black dial model, this case is rated at a solid 100 meters of water resistance and features a wide display caseback to showcase the in-house microrotor movement.
The new Bulgari Octo Finissimo Automatic Steel follows the same streamlined pattern as its predecessors, with a mix of long applied stick indices and slender Arabic numerals alongside a minimalist sub seconds subdial at 7:30. The new lacquer blue sunburst dial option, however, does a surprising amount to soften the overall feel of the Octo Finissimo design, taking a shape that can at times feel a touch brutalist and injecting a calming oceanic tone. The end result feels a bit more human, more comfortable, and substantially less like the villain in a Blade Runner sequel. The color itself is more subdued than one might expect, as Bulgari opts for a slightly desaturated steel blue that helps to preserve some of the refinement of the overall design.
Like its black dial counterpart, the new Bulgari Octo Finissimo Automatic Steel is powered by the in house BVL138 automatic movement. This extremely thin caliber sports a platinum microrotor to reduce thickness, along with a host of decorations including Côtes de Genève on all movement plates, and hand applied perlage on select surfaces. In terms of performance, this ultra slim movement manages to deliver a 60 hour power reserve in spite of its size.
Of course, with the Octo Finissimo collection the integrated bracelet is a major part of the equation, and the new blue dial variant keeps this intact. With the recently introduced brushed finish, this tapering geometric design takes on a much more dynamic personality in changing light.
While not the most drastic update to the line in recent memory, the new blue dial Bulgari Octo Finissimo Automatic Steel adds solid versatility to the collection while also tapping directly into the current luxury watch zeitgeist. Pricing for this specific variant of the Bulgari Octo Finissimo Automatic Steel has not been announced as of press time, but comparable black dial models carry an MSRP of $12,000. Find out more at Bulgari’s website.