Bulgari has made a habit in recent years of breaking horological thinness records at Baselworld, introducing the world’s thinnest tourbillon at Baselworld 2014 and thinnest minute repeater in 2016. The watch-and-jewelry giant shattered another such record this year with the debut of the Octo Finissimo Automatic — at 5.15 mm thick, the slimmest self-winding watch on the market.
Every element of the Bulgari Octo Finissimo Automatic — from the movement to the case to even the dial — was conceived from the outset to contribute to the extreme overall slenderness of the finished timepiece. The multi-faceted Octo case — whose design is influenced by ancient Roman architecture — is made of sandblasted titanium and measures 40 mm in diameter. The titanium crown is topped by a black ceramic insert. The dial is also made of titanium and features hands and hour markers coated with a black PVD treatment; an off-centered small seconds subdial appears at the 7 o’clock position. The case is water-resistant to 30 meters despite its ultra-thin profile of 5.15 mm (The Piaget Altiplano 900P, at just 3.65 mm thick, remains the thinnest mechanical wristwatch, but its movement is manual-winding rather than automatic.)
The movement — which measures a wafer-like 2.23 mm thick and is on display through the sapphire caseback — was developed in-house and now claims the title of the slimmest self-winding movement. Dubbed Caliber BVL 138 Finissimo, it winds its mainspring by means of a platinum micro-rotor and beats at a frequency of 21,600 vph. Measuring 36.6 mm in diameter and storing a power reserve of 60 hours, the movement is decorated by hand with traditional haute horlogerie finishes, including côtes de Genève, chamfered edges on the bridges, and circular graining on the mainplate. The watch comes with either a black alligator leather strap with a titanium pin buckle or a titanium link bracelet with a folding clasp. Prices are $12,800 on the strap and $13,900 on a bracelet.