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New Release: MB&F HM8 with pics and full specs.

Our traditional hands-on analysis with live photographs delayed.
by Peter Chong on September 27, 2016
Review MB&F HM8

Announcing the MB&F HM8. 

 

We are unable to bring you our usual hands-on analytical review of the new MB&F watch at embargo lifting time. We have already prepared the framework for a hands-on review, but have to pull that back till we are able to actually spend time with the watch to be able to give you our analysis. In the meantime, here is information which we have taken from the press release, with our initial thoughts on the new HM8.

Many thanks to Charris Yadigaroglou for sending the Press Release early to allow us to prepare this.

 

MB&F HM8 in rose gold, front and back.

MB&F HM8 in rose gold, front and back.

 

 

The inspiration

The inspiration behind the HM8 is based on car design. This time the Can-Am Challenge Cup, a race which ran from 1966-1987. This is a no-holds barred race, with very few restrictions on the construction of the cars. And this led to huge powerful engines and innovation which was only possible when constructors are allowed to freely dream.

 

 

The Watch

 

The watch is a driving watch. The dashboard with the time telling bits are situated above the lugs. And the traditional place for the dial is taken up by a massive sapphire crystal allowing a peek into the huge battle axe MB&F signature rotor, and the movement within. When worn on the wrist, it allows the time to be read without taking one’s hand off the steering wheel.

 

MB&F HM8 in rose gold. The signature battle axe rotor in stunningly beautiful blue is showcased below the sapphire glass covering the entire top of the case.

MB&F HM8 in rose gold. The signature battle axe rotor in stunningly beautiful blue is showcased below the sapphire glass covering the entire top of the case.

 

Two “roll bars” like those used to protect the cabin of a racing car are installed over the sapphire crystal, protecting it. The roll bars are in Grade 5 titanium and sensuously curved.

 

MB&F HM8 from the crown side. The roll bars in polished titanium protecting the movement which is under the curved sapphire glass top.

MB&F HM8 from the crown side. The roll bars in polished titanium protecting the movement which is under the curved sapphire glass top.

 

The dashboard shows the time display which are indicated on a jumping hour disc and a trailing minutes disc on the top of the movement. This is then reflected via a system of prisms to be shown on the dashboard.

 

The dashboard of the MB&F HM8, showing the way to tell the time. This is the platinum version.

The dashboard of the MB&F HM8, showing the way to tell the time. This is the platinum version.

 

From the case back, we see the movement which resembles an engine sump.

 

The caseback showing the engine sump.

The caseback showing the engine sump.

 

 

Impressions

Without handling and seeing the watch first hand, the HM8 looks like a souped up HM5 on steroids. Both the HM5 and HM8 are based on the same GP base movement. The very similar HMX is based on a Selita movement, and the trio seem to have been derived from the same blueprint. The HM8 takes the design concept to its furthest, and the HMX seems like a “budget” version, with the HM5 occupying middle ground.

The HM5 does not display the rotor on the top (the movement in the HM8 is modified to flip the rotor), the same space is taken by a set of slats which can open to allow light into the watch to charge the SuperLuminova. While on the HMX, the top is open to reveal the engine covers. A special collaboration series with Black Badger shows cases the wildly beautiful luminous material. The HMX’s prism system also seems to be a simplified construction. The HM8’s entire top is a huge sapphire glass, presumably to allow light into the movement, and MB&F claims this allows the time to be read easily. We will confirm or deny this when we get our hands-on session.

Price: CHF 78,000 before tax.

MB&F HM8 Can-Am technical specifications

Engine

Three-dimensional engine conceived and developed by MB&F from a Girard-Perregaux base calibre
Automatic battle-axe winding rotor in 22k gold
Power reserve: 42 hours
Balance frequency: 28,800bph / 4Hz
Number of components: 247
Number of jewels: 30
Functions/indications

Bi-directional jumping hours and trailing minutes displayed by two optical prisms that both reflect and magnify
Case

Material: launch editions in 18k white gold/titanium and 18k red gold/titanium
Dimensions: 49 mm x 51.5 mm x 19 mm
Number of components: 60 components
Water resistance: 30 m / 90′ / 3 atm
Sapphire crystals

All sapphire crystals – front, back, top, bottom – treated with anti-reflective coating on both faces
Strap & buckle

Hand-stitched alligator strap in marine blue (white gold case) and dark brown (red gold case) with folding buckle in matching case material

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