Just like the old-school automotive motif DeWitt is channeling in its latest watch, the independent manufacture refuses to slow down. Looking over the Academia Endless Drive, its distinguishing feature is a helical screw that cuts straight down the center of the watch. On the left side of the screw is a white hour dial; directly opposite you can find the minutes. This isn’t the first time we’ve seen an hour and minute display separated onto subdials — in fact, it’s a popular look for many independent marques trying to make a splash — but the opening that juts through the middle combined with the inky blackness of the dial creates an interesting depth that is both hyper-masculine and understated at the same time.
The “endless” screw is linked to the power reserve’s winding system. As the 59-hour power reserve decreases, the screw rotates to show a red indicator at 12 o’clock. When the barrel is fully wound, the screw slides on its longitudinal axis and reveals a green indicator in the same spot. This unique display is meant to channel both an automotive aesthetic — a favorite of brand founder Count Jérôme de Witt — and the procedural nature of time itself.
The 42.5 mm timepiece features a galvanized black dial that is handcrafted in-house and contrasts rather nicely with the rose gold case. On both sides of the watch, you’ll find the black rubber imperial crowns that the brand is known for embedded into the case. There’s an exhibition sapphire crystal caseback featuring the brand’s self-winding DW1653 movement, which is a modified take on the DeWitt 5050 caliber. It beats at 21,600 vibrations per hour.
The watch comes on a black satin calfskin leather strap with a polished, 18-carat rose gold, triple-folding clasp. It’s priced at $46,500.