Glashütte Original

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Glashütter Uhrenbetrieb Hauptgebäude
© Glashütte Original

Glashütte Original (Glashütter Uhrenbetrieb GmbH) is a German watch manufacturer, currently part of the Swatch Group's Prestige and Luxury division.

The Glashütter Uhrenbetrieb (GUB)

In 1990 the Glashütter Uhrenbetrieb (GUB) was created from the VEB Glashütter Uhrenbetriebe. During this period the Calibre 10-30 as well as a new assortment of mechanical self-winding watches using Swiss ETA was designed and completed. The proven Calibre 09-20 was further manufactured. In the quartz watch production in addition to their own movements also Swiss quartz movements of the type TTC-Longlife were used.

Master watchmaker in the Glashütter Uhrenbetrieb
© Glashütte Original

From December 1992 to July 1993 simplified versions of the Calibre 10-30 were manufactured​. The intention was to offer again a high quality, according to the Tutima quality level, signed with "Glashütte Original", and a cheaper, simpler quality level, according to the Urofa quality. Thus in this period approximately 1,264 watches with simplified movements of the Calibre 10-30 were produced.

New beginning after the 'Wende' (turn) with Heinz W. Pfeifer

Glashütte Original PanoMaticTourbillon
© Glashütte Original
Glashütte Original Calibre GO 60

1994 the Glashütter Uhrenbetrieb GmbH is privatized by the selling to Heinz W. Pfeifer and Alfred Wallner and since has the brand name Glashütte Original.

With a magnificent flagship of the new collection, the PanoRetroGraph, the company in 2000 really shows what it is capable of, because this watch is a extremely complex creation, including a wonderful manufacture movement, the Calibre GO 60. A watch with this combination of complications has not existed before throughout the history of watches. Since there is a panorama date a fly-back function and at the same time something very rare, namely a countdown function with bell, that is, the chronograph measures the time backwards, comparable to an egg timer that rings when the waiting time has elapsed. Of course this watch, with a case in white gold or platinum, is almost prohibitive - it represents a culmination of what competent watchmakers in Glashütte are able to afford. In 2001 it wins richly deserved the watch election Watch of the Year.

The model range Senator was very well accepted by the market: clear, objective and restrained in design, with a calm, confident aura that gives an idea that behind the dignified appearance lies a concentrated accumulation of inner values. This includes, as usual with Glashütte Original, the in-house manufacture movement, here the first self-winding movement GO 39, then replaced by its successor, the Calibre GO 100. Both have the traditional Glashütte design of a three-quarter plate, a skeletonized rotor with the gold initials of two mirrored "G"s, and as a bonus, there is a Swan's neck fine regulation, as it is to be found only in watches of the higher quality levels.

The highly refined movements shine with 'Wölkchenschliff' (perlage), angled edges and bearings set in chatons. Depending on his taste the proud purchaser of such a prestigious watch can additionally order the desired complications: there is an optional chronograph or perpetual calendar, big date and/or moon-phase indication.

Other well-known model series are the Sport Series, the pilot's watch series Navigator, and the interesting rectangular Karree models in Art Déco style.

In the specialty series Meisterwerke (Masterworks) there are luxurious, usually quickly sold-out models, for instance: Julius Assmann Tourbillon (1995), Alfred Helwig Flying Tourbillon (1996), Karree Tourbillon (1998), Alfred Helwig Tourbillon 2 (2001), PanoMaticTourbillon (2003) and Julius Assmann 3 (2003).

Acquired by the Swatch Group

Since 2000 the company is part of the Swiss Swatch Group and continues to follow its line to present top-quality manufacture watches in the upper price segment.

Literature

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