How The Excalibur Collection Forged Roger Dubuis’ Fearless Spirit

THM Desk
24 Jan 2024 |
clock icon5 min read
like image
comment icon image
like image
SUMMARIZEarrow down

Roger Dubuis has carved out a unique niche in the luxury watch world with its bold, contemporary designs incorporating cutting-edge technical innovations. And no Roger Dubuis collection encapsulates this identity more than the symbolic Excalibur line, named after the legendary sword of King Arthur. Since its launch in 2005, the Excalibur Collection has pushed boundaries and taken hyper horology into uncharted territory. Let's explore the rich history and groundbreaking timepieces that define this exceptional family of timepieces.

Roger Dubuis first collection 1995
Roger Dubuis first collection 1995


Roger Dubuis founded his eponymous brand in Geneva in 1995 with an emphasis on applying modern technology and materials to Haute Horlogerie. The goal was to create audacious watches that appealed to younger generations while upholding the highest standards of Swiss watchmaking. The Excalibur Collection launched ten years later as the culmination of this vision. Its distinctive aesthetic made an immediate impact, from the aggressive styling to the contemporary case shapes to the multi-faceted fluted bezels. 


The name Excalibur draws from the mystical blade brandished by King Arthur, representing honor, power and strength. Like the fabled sword, the watches in this collection cut a bold profile. The iconic styling also reflects Roger Dubuis' values of unconventional designs and fearless innovation. From its inception, the Excalibur displayed a willingness to push boundaries and challenge tradition.

Early Innovations

The inaugural Excalibur references made a splash with their progressive style and cutting-edge mechanics. The very first model, the Excalibur double tourbillon skeleton (RD01SQ) and minute repeater tourbillon (RD08), encapsulated the collection's identity with its angular 42mm case, fluted bezel, and multi-layered dial. Striking visual details like the Roger Dubuis star logo engraved on the crown and contemporary Roman numeral hour markers made it clear this watch was different. 

RD01 movement

But the beauty was more than skin deep. The Excalibur's signature feature was the brand's own RD01 movement, which offered a modern interpretation of traditional haute horlogerie finishing. Skeletonized to showcase the movement architecture and rotor, it demonstrated advanced techniques like circular graining across bridges and diamond-cut beveled angles. Expressed through a contemporary lens, this fusion of old-world craftsmanship and next-gen style defined the Excalibur ethos.

As the collection expanded, Roger Dubuis continued to introduce technical innovations alongside design flair. In 2006, the Excalibur Automatic incorporated significant materials like a titanium case and carbon bezel along with an updated caliber. 2007 saw the debut of the Excalibur Chronograph, one of the first Roger Dubuis models to combine chronograph functionality with skeletonization for optimal visual drama. 

By 2011, the brand took things a step further with a high-complication Excalibur that touted a perpetual calendar, retrograde date and flying tourbillon. Stripped down for lighter weight and sportier appeal, this exceptional timepiece highlighted the Excalibur's ability not just to look modern but also to perform at the pinnacle of watchmaking.

A Star Is Born

A major turning point occurred in 2013 with the unveiling of the iconic Excalibur Spider Skeleton Double Flying Tourbillon. This radical reinterpretation of the Excalibur turned heads with its spider-like construction featuring torque-resistant cables emanating from a central flying tourbillon carriage. 

The open-worked movement allowed light to pass through the form, accentuating the technical artistry. Enhancing the modern style further was the carbon fiber case material. But the true star of the show was the dual-flying tourbillon escapement, delivering outstanding timekeeping along with mesmerizing visual drama. 

Excalibur Spider
The groundbreaking Excalibur Spider represented a new breed of Roger Dubuis Expression watches, focusing on avant-garde designs combined with manufactory movements. Much more than mere novelty, these pieces highlighted the brand's capacity for creativity and skill. This signature approach formed the core of the Excalibur line moving forward.

But what about Hyper Horology? Stay tuned!