Ulysse Nardin New Freaks Collection | Watches and Wonders Geneva 2022

Are you ready to skyrocket in the watchmaking world with a rocket on your wrist? Yes, you read that right. Hold tight as you’re about to witness a shock wave with Ulysse Nardin’s new rendition of the Freak S timepiece.

Ulysse Nardin’s new rendition of the Freak S timepiece.
Ulysse Nardin’s new rendition of the Freak S timepiece.

Ulysse Nardin’s new high-tech watchmaking masterpiece is taking off, propelled by a tremendous solar wind. The Manufacture looked to the brightest stars in the galaxy for inspiration. At first look, the brand’s groundbreaking new watch resembles a spacecraft with twin reactors, and it will be best worn by individuals who never doubt. This invention, which combines all of the superlatives, was made possible by the skill of an integrated Manufacture; it embodies contemporary luxury masterfully manifested in a cutting-edge watchmaking design.

If there is a breakthrough moment in the history of Ulysse Nardin, it is the year 2001, when the first Freak watch, one of the most creative models of its time, was introduced. This groundbreaking timepiece defied traditional watchmaking standards by lacking hands, dials, and crowns.

A carousel movement indicates the time
A carousel movement indicates the time

Carole Forestier Kasapi devised the notion, which was later brought to life by Ludwig Oechslin, a philosopher and genius who worked as a watchmaker for Ulysse Nardin at the time. In the Freak collection, Ulysse Nardin has been steadily pushing back the frontiers of traditional watchmaking for nearly two decades. Wearing a Freak is like carrying a mini-laboratory on your wrist that has seen numerous big breakthroughs.

“A carousel movement indicates the time. It’s a one-of-a-kind concept unlike anything else on the market. No one dares to duplicate the product since it is so unique. It’s a celebration of cutting-edge technology” says Ulysse Nardin’s Product Director, Jean-Christophe Sabatier.

Ulysse Nardin’s CEO, Patrick Pruniaux said, “The Freak is a watch with a revolutionary character that is fueled by fresh technical difficulties on a regular basis.” We at Ulysse Nardin continue to explore all conceivable avenues afforded by science to ensure ongoing progress in the precision and utility of our time-keeping instruments, just like the heroes of Homer’s Odyssey who visited many new regions.”

The Very First Double Oscillator With A Differential

The Manufacture’s developers chose to amaze the connoisseurs by designing the brand’s first double oscillator with a differential and automatic winding, which was made possible by the “Grinder” technology, which is twice as efficient as a typical winding system. The Freak S is a new mechanical marvel that features the following notable innovations:

• DiamonSIL technology is used to create an angled double oscillator.

• A vertical disparity,

• An automatic winding system called “Grinder,”

• A new case based on the original Freak from 2001, with a construction that allows for the use of various materials like as ceramic, titanium, and gold.

Grinder" technology, which is twice as efficient as a typical winding system.
Grinder” technology, which is twice as efficient as a typical winding system.

Double Trouble!

The technological teams of Ulysse Nardin have excelled in pushing the three-dimensional effect to its limits. The slanted double oscillator of the Freak S is a first, marking the start of the new UN-251 Manufacture movement. The two XXL silicium balance-wheels with inertia-blocks are linked by a differential, which draws the average of their rates, and are positioned on different planes as if on two launching pads. They are connected by a rose gold bridge in the shape of a rocket’s wing, which is built on two designs that are 20 degrees apart. Siamese create the impression of two turboprops beating time at 2.5 Hz in a rhythmic tango, enhancing the timepiece’s 3D effect and space inspiration.

UN-251 Manufacture movement.
UN-251 Manufacture movement.

The differential of the inclined double oscillator allows for better control of the movement’s operating rate. The most typical application of a differential is in an automobile’s transmission. When a vehicle makes a turn, a differential is essential because it allows the driving wheels to turn at different speeds: the wheels on the outside of the turning curve turn faster than the wheels on the inside. It serves an important purpose here by taking the average of two rates and dividing the barrel’s energy evenly across the two regulating organs, ensuring that the amplitude remains stable. The Freak S’s two oscillators never oscillate at the same speed and are thus mutually adjusted thanks to this mechanism, which is as beautiful as it is functional.

The Freak S's two oscillators never oscillate at the same speed
The Freak S’s two oscillators never oscillate at the same speed

Expert In Silicium Technologies

After being the first to employ silicium in the Freak watch in 2001, Ulysse Nardin is now showing DiamonSIL, a unique surface treatment that combines silicium and synthetic diamond (patented in 2009). The escapement of the Freak S has been coated with an artificial diamond layer, which improves its performance and resilience to wear, as well as the watch’s several million impacts every year. This method is one of the Manufacture’s most significant breakthroughs in the previous 20 years.

A Sneakpeak Into The Engine Room

The micromechanical machinery beneath the Freak S’s crystal is little more than a carousel with a 72-hour autonomy and no hands, dial, or crown. Due to the rotation of its movement, the Freak tells the time. Around the middle, two bridges rotate. They represent the minutes and hours, respectively. The hour is indicated by a Super-LumiNova® arrow, while the minutes are indicated by the nose cone of the rocket, which houses the balance-wheels and the escapement. The movement pivots on its centre axis inside a high-tech casing with a sapphire crystal during its 60-minute revolution.

Watches And Wonders 2022_ Ulysee Nardin_ Tracing New Orbits With The New Freak S Collection
The caseback

Unlike regular tourbillons, which have a balance wheel that rotates once per minute within a cage, the Freak’s entire movement – including its regulating organ – rotates once every hour. The time of the Freak S is set simply spinning the bezel clockwise or counterclockwise.

Master Of Blades

The “Grinder” automatic winding technology, which came standard on the Freak Vision, has been significantly improved. Because its energy transmission is twice as efficient as conventional systems, the Grinder is twice as efficient as a traditional automatic winding system. It makes the tiniest wrist movements possible. The self-winding mechanism has twice the angular stroke since the oscillating weight is attached to a frame with four blades. Friction is greatly reduced via a flexible guiding system.

A rose gold Sport cut-out.
A rose gold Sport cut-out.

The Freak S is being offered in a limited edition of 75 pieces, with only 40 being produced in 2022. Every watch comes with an alligator strap with a rose gold Sport cut-out.

If the stars appear to be randomly distributed throughout the universe, the subtle decorating of the deep black mineral ornamental plate, gleaming with golden particles, was not done “by coincidence”… The aventurine that adorns the movement has a glistening appearance that gives the Freak S the gleam of a starry night.

Price: CHF 130’000