Given everything that’s happened in the past couple of years, a decade feels like a lifetime ago, a more optimistic time of yore when we could still leave the house. It was also back when MB&F was still a plucky young go-getter. Oh how times have changed. Still, the roots of what MB&F is today can be traced very cleanly back to 2010 and, more specifically, the original three-dimensional HM3 Frog.
Conceived for the collaborative watch brand by Jean-Marc Wiederrecht, the maestro behind the Faberge Visionaire and Singer Track 1, the Frog was unmissable, unmistakable and more than a little unusual. Between the timekeeping eyes in the form of domed minute and hour counters, the upside-down construction and downright insane overall shape, it became an instant classic of off-kilter horology.
Now, after 10 years, it’s back. That’s a big deal given MB&F’s penchant for small, relatively short runs of pieces, and a chance for the many collectors that missed it first time around to add the piece to their collection.
Mechanically there’s nothing different about this new, anniversary edition of the Frog. It has precisely the same Girard-Perregaux-based (albeit very customised) calibre. This time though, you can see it all completely unadulterated thanks to the new full sapphire case.
To add a bit of colour to the otherwise monochrome style of the watch, the Frog X is available in three versions: blue, purple and turquoise SuperLuminova, with each case ringed in the respective colour, complete with a matching rotor and gasket.
As a final secret flourish, when the winding crown catches the light at just the right angle, it reveals MB&F’s battle-axe signature.
10 years on and a lot has changed, but the original HM3 Frog is still a phenomenal feat of watchmaking, worth paying homage to. MB&F is still be pushing three-dimensional watchmaking as far as it’ll go, that’s not about to change: but in many ways, it started here.
Price & Specs:
Model: MB&F FrogX
Case/Dial: 48.3mm diameter, sapphire crystal case, blue, purple or turquoise case gasket
Water resistance: 30m (3 bar)
Movement: Three-dimensional horological engine designed by Jean-Marc Wiederrecht / Agenhor, powered by a Girard-Perregaux base, MB&F battle-axe rotor in 22k gold and titanium with blue, purple or turquoise CVD coating, automatic, 36 jewels
Frequency: 28,800 vph (4 Hz)
Power reserve: 48h
Functions: Hours on one dome (aluminium dome rotating in 12 hours), minutes on second dome (aluminium dome rotating in 60 minutes), “secret message” crown reflects light rays to project the MB&F battle-axe icon (Rayform technology)
Strap: Hand-stitched alligator leather in blue, purple or white with titanium folding buckle
Price/availability: CHF 138,000 + VAT (USD 152,000 / EUR 128,000 + tax), limited to 10 pieces each colour
More details at MB&F.