Last week we brought you our hands-on review of the Hublot MP-05 LaFerrari King Gold here. Since this watch is pretty much the exact same watch but with a fully polished sapphire crystal case, we'll keep the information relatively identical with some tweaks here and there. Next time you have the opportunity to see one of the Hublot MP or Key of Time creations in person, you'll understand much better the real strength behind this brand, especially when it comes to watches with full sapphire crystal cases. While Hublot is not the first brand to incursion in the making of sapphire crystal watch cases, they are one that has been quite active lately, more so than Richard Mille. Released at the beginning of 2016, the Hublot MP-05 LaFerrari Sapphire set the road for the release of the Big Bang Unico Sapphire and the Big Bang Unico Sapphire 'All Black' during Baselworld 2016. You can read our review of those two new pieces right here. But now, let's continue with our hands-on review of this fascinating timepiece which is now our favorite MP-05 LaFerrari right after the 'All Black' one.
Fitted with a very unique case design inspired by the shape of a Ferrari engine inside the Ferrari LaFerrari, this particular watch is now available in a clear fully polished sapphire crystal case. The case of the Hublot MP-05 LaFerrari Sapphire is extremely solid and not as 'fragile' as one would think, considering its crystal case construction. While Hublot has not provided any specifics regarding the thickness of the crystal utilized on the case, we are confident that is sturdy enough to not shatter at the first drop on a semi-hard surface. Unfortunately, we clearly couldn't put it to the test. The case measures approximately 52 mm long x 48 mm wide and 16 mm thick.
On what would be the 12 o'clock position on any conventional timepiece, the Hublot MP-05 LaFerrari features a wrench fitting that is utilized to wind the watch —below you will find more detailed information on how to wind the watch and how to set the time. On top of that area, the case features a black Ferrari 'Cavallino Rampante'. Its curves and multi-layer construction are finished with a perfect fully polished transparent look.
Perhaps the most intriguing part of the Hublot LaFerrari is how one tells time and what the fully skeletonized dial —actually the back of the movement— is really about.
Fitted with a suspended vertical tourbillon at what would be the 6 o'clock position, the Hublot LaFerrari indicates the hours and minutes via two engraved clear sapphire crystal cylinders with white numerals and red accents displaying the hours and minutes in increments of five on the right side of the dial. If we look at the picture below, the watch shows that the time is 10:00.
Additionally, there is a power reserve indicator also comprised of two engraved clear sapphire crystal cylinders with white numerals and red accents located on the left side of the dial. Looking at the picture below, the power reserve reads approximately 38 days. The Hublot MP-05 LaFerrari Sapphire can be fully wound to provide a power reserve of at least 50 days —1200 hours.
Lastly, the Hublot MP-05 LaFerrari Sapphire is fitted with a suspended vertical tourbillon. The seconds are indicated thanks to a black indicator ring that rotates along with the vertical tourbillon carriage and that is located right below the 'Hublot' inscription on the dial side.
Fully visible from any angle thanks to its clear sapphire crystal case construction, the Hublot MP-05 LaFerrari Sapphire is powered by an impressive manual wound calibre with suspended vertical tourbillon and 11-series coupled barrels. The movement, is not only capable of boasting the longest power reserve for a wristwatch in the industry at 50 days —1,200 hours—, but it is also a remarkable example of 'haute horlogerie' and a real treat for the eyes.
Winding & Setting the Time
Considering its impressive 50-day power reserve, the Hublot MP-05 LaFerrari Sapphire requires a set of special tools to ease the winding of its movement and to properly set the time as there is no pull-out crown. These special tools comprise, a small power drill —referred to by Hublot as a pistol— and a hand key ring with two different bits.
To set the time, the wearer needs to remove the bit located on the right side of the key ring, then turn the watch over and place the time setting bit on the crown —black round part with five perforations— located on the bottom left corner of the display case back. Then, the crown needs to be turned clockwise until the time is set to the desired time. Whenever setting the time, the wearer needs to compensate for the movement's gear play of 2 minutes which is the time it takes for the minute cylinder to rotate towards the dial side. Therefore, when setting the time, one needs to set the time on the case back two minutes ahead of the desired time.
To wind the watch, the wearer can use either the hand key ring tool for a minimal power reserve adjustment or the power drill/pistol —rechargeable via USB— when the 50-day power reserve has been fully depleted. To wind the watch using the drill/pistol, all one needs to do, is insert the smallest bit on the drill inside the wrench opening at 12 o'clock and press the trigger on the pistol. After pressing the trigger for a few minutes, the power reserve indicator on the left side of the dial will read 50 days. To avoid any damage to the mechanism, the drill spins at a very low torque speed.
In order to match the racing nature of the Hublot MP-05 LaFerrari Sapphire, the watch is fitted with an integrated semi-transparent rubber strap with deployant folding clasp in polished sapphire crystal and microblasted black-plated titanium. The strap is fully integrated to the case on both sides, and secured by hex screws on the front of the case right below the tourbillon opening for the 6 o'clock side and on the case back for the 12 o'clock side. The strap is very malleable and extremely comfortable. Ideally, we wish the strap had been more transparent matching the clarity of the case.
On the Wrist & Pricing
On the wrist, the MP-05 LaFerrari Sapphire wears extremely big and quite impressive. For sure, this is a stunning watch where nothing hides inside the case and where transparency is the name of the game. With unparalleled wrist presence, the Hublot MP-05 LaFerrari Sapphire is definitely a huge conversation starter anywhere you go and a watch that only a few will get to own —talk about an exclusive timepiece.
Sticker Price $595,000 USD. For more info on Hublot click here.