Franck Muller x Bill Auberlen limited edition watches will rekindle your thought

Bill Auberlen has many records to his credited, the most influential being the record for most wins in the IMSA ever, with career spanning well over 60 wins. In order to celebrate the racing legends race to 61st win, the luxury watchmaker Franck Muller introduced the US limited edition Vanguard Racing Collection.

To date, Auberlen has won 64 races, which bills him as one of the most successful sports drivers in US history. The collection comprises three Vanguard case editions in 18k rose gold, black forged carbon fiber and blue titanium, all with automotive-inspired bent paying tribute to the greatest drivers of all time and BMW racing.

The design

The watches are an interesting blend of horology craftsmanship and automotive, the two facets that Muller and Auberlen share. These feature the Swiss watchmaker’s skeletonized movement which is reminiscent of the car engine viewable through the open caseback of the timepieces.

The US limited edition Vanguard Racing Collection features unique watches that allow the center seconds to be read from both ends of the hand. For a more intriguing effect to the skeletonized design, the watchmaker has made the date numerals fully skeletonized as well.

The make and movement

The watches, reference V 45 SC DT SQT RCG Bill Auberlen comes, as mentioned, in three case materials. These 44mm diameter watches in either 18-carat Rose gold, Carbon or grade-2 titanium with blue hybrid resin are water-resistant to 30 meters. The titanium watch is made from material with a blend of blue hybrid resin at the molecular level.  

On appearance, the US limited edition Vanguard Racing Collection seems bulky, but for those keeping a record, the watch thickness is only 12.7mm. The watches are powered by MVT FM 2800-SQ01 self-winding movement that features a bidirectional rotor and offers 42 hour power reserve.

These timepieces are paired with a black leather bracelet or rubber strap. The 18k rose gold option will set you back $31,500, the black carbon fiber variant is priced at $25,500, while the blue titanium model is available for $24,000. Since these are commemorative watches, each of them is limited to only 61 pieces.