When your beat is on the streets of the night-time urban jungle, where unknown menace lurks around every corner and danger down each alleyway, in a place where being meek and mild just won't cut it power is all about presence, and so futurist indie watchmakers URWERK have given their already imposing UR-105 CT Streamliner the Kryptonite factor and a brooding makeover with an all black case from within which a powerful green glow pierces the darkest hours, bright enough to stun a foe at thirty paces.
With more than a passing resemblance to the type of vehicle one would half expect a self appointed, crime busting guardian of society to emerge from, the profile of this black chunk of horological armour is sleek, its shape sculpted and unconventional, and with its slanted sapphire screen and sleek raked roof the UR-105 CT Kryptonite has the look of a Koenigsegg, a spectacular time display, and more drama than a box set of Batman movies.
According to URWERK's co founder Martin Frei the UR-105 model is inspired by the art deco influences on the early twentieth century architecture of New York's skyscrapers, and with a flip-up coupé top which when opened up reveals the system of rotating discs that display the hours beneath, the UR-105 CT is certainly a most unusual time piece in every sense, but then again, we're talking about URWERK here, and if you're looking for conventional, then better look elsewhere.
The elongated octagonal case is constructed in titanium and coated with a smooth matte black deposit of super hard AlTiN (a protective vapour alloy of aluminium, titanium and nitride used in industrial cutting and drilling). The time is displayed beneath a dome of sapphire, where the minutes are printed in an arc across which the current hour is highlighted as it passes through its sixty minute cycle, with small seconds on a separate disc over to the left, and a graduating power reserve indicator right. As striking as these features already are, it's when the daylight fades that with a generous application of Super-LumiNova the numerals and information displays come alive and its powerful green and blue lume transform the display, so that it glows vividly against the dark hulk of the watch and the low light of night.
With the big tactile crown located between the top lugs the UR-105 is symmetric from above, and on the top of the case a slider button releases the upper cover so it can be flipped open to reveal the blacked mechanicals under the sapphire, and in particular URWERK's spectacular revolving carrousel on which the wandering hour discs cycle around the dial like satellites every four hours, each with three digits and themselves rotating so as one hour nears its end and approaches the sixty minute mark, the next is emerging stage right as it creeps forward to take over.
Underneath there is the curious sight of a pair of tiny pneumatic turbines, which remarkably dampen the winding mechanism, so by toggling the flat lever on the back between the three available settings which allow the turbines to spin freely, restrained or stopped altogether, so even vigorous activity can be tempered to prevent over stressing the mainspring.
Served up on a black leather backed strap with a coarsely woven fabric and titanium pin buckle, the UR-105 CT Kryptonite is as technically fascinating as it is mean and sinister and packs enough of a punch to floor any fearsome villain. It is priced at CHF60'000
REFERENCE: UR-105 CT Kryptonite
CASE SIZE: 39.5mm x 53mm
CASE MATERIAL: Titanium with black AlTiN coating
MOVEMENT: UR 5.03 manufacture self winding, 28'800 vph
POWER RESERVE: c. 48 hours
FUNCTIONS: Hours, minutes, seconds, power reserve
BUCKLE: Pin buckle
WATERPROOF RATING: 30 m
PRICE: c. €60'000