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Louis Vuitton's New Tambour Voyagez II Watch Evokes 1970s Racers

Laurie Kahle
Posted: November 7, 2012

This year, Louis Vuitton marks its 10th anniversary in mechanical watchmaking with a number of special edition Tambour watches, the brand's flagship model. Following five regatta timepieces commemorating the Louis Vuitton Cup and America's Cup sailing contests, this fall, the brand delivered its new Tambour Voyagez II, the second edition of its Tachometer Tambour Automatic Chronograph.

Available in steel (limited to 888 pieces) and 18-karat pink gold (limited to 88 pieces), the Voyagez II blends vintage and contemporary vibes with a dial design that takes its cues from the dashboards of 1970s-era race cars. The gray dial is accented with hints of red and black and a small second counter positioned at 3 o'clock. The chronograph's small, red central hand tracks minutes while a triple circular tachometric scale allows you to calculate the average speed traveled over a kilometer.

Underneath the hood beats the LV 168 automatic caliber, specially manufactured for the brand by Dubois-Dépraz with a 42-hour power reserve and a date display at 6 o'clock. The perforated calfskin strap evokes the steering wheel covers of vintage sports cars, like those that competed in last spring's Louis Vuitton Classic Serenissima Run.

Louis Vuitton has sponsored seven vintage car rallies around the world since 1993. Serenissima's route took drivers and navigators on a four-day 1,400-kilometer (about 870 miles) trek from Monte Carlo to Venice with stops in Menthon-Saint-Bernard, France; Stresa, Italy and Verona. The field of 42 incredibly rare and precious vintage cars valued at more than $300 million included Arturo Keller's 1938 Mercedes-Benz 540K, which took the best of show prize, Bruce Meyer's 1929 Bentley 4 ½ liter, Michael Leventhal's 1950 Ferrari 166 MM, and Thomas Price's 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO, a model so rare that one recently sold for more than $30 million.

From elite car rallies to high-performance tachymeter watches, Louis Vuitton carries on its legacy in motoring that dates back to 1897 when it produced its first automobile trunk.

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