H. Moser & Cie Streamliner Flyback LE
Watch releases innovative or beautiful enough to take your breath away are few and far between. Seeing a small, modern independent execute both arts while being funky enough to remind one of the 1970s Omega Flightmaster or Sinn 142 is another thing entirely. In the casual horologist zeitgeist, H. Moser & Cie are best known for their Swiss Alp, Swiss Cheese, and Swiss Icon master-level marketing trolls. However, amongst those paying closer attention, Moser are known more for their gorgeous fumé dials and beautifully-finished, technically-competent calibres . . .perhaps lesser so for their sporting merits. That is, until the Streamliner.
In the modern market, many smaller marques have taken on the challenge of producing their own integrated sports steel offering. See, we tend to think of only the holy trinity sport offerings when prompted with the category (Royal Oak, Nautilus, Overseas). Perhaps also the Laureato if you’re the sort of person who drives a Lotus Exige instead of a Cayman. But recently the entire market has taken to meet consumer demand, with Lange’s Odysseus, Tissot’s PRX, hell even Laurent Ferrier with their Grand Sport. So how is it that amongst all this noise, the relatively tiny crew of Edouard Meylan & team at Moser completely stole the show? How does one create a modern classic?
I would like to answer that query with something of a hot take. Along with Bvlgari’s Finissimo, Moser’s Streaminer is one of very few entrants to this fray whose design looks unashamedly toward the future; that is to say wholly individual. With no sporting past to weigh them down, both manufactures have doubled-down on new thought. Even if it looks like what a futuristic, crustacean-based alien civilization imagines a 1970s wristwatch to be, it is looking toward a new dawn and not trying to reimagine a porthole for the forty-ninth time.
The Streamliner is powered by the calibre HMC 902 made by Aghenor, also in use in Singer’s chronograph and a few others though finished in house at Moser. It is hugely innovative. Interestingly, the movement is automatic but they’ve sandwiched the rotor in between the dial and base plate to provide an unobstructed view of the open chronograph. It took 434 components to achieve this feat (as opposed to ~200 in standard chrono), in other words, considerable effort. It’s still lateral clutch, column wheel and a respectable 7.3mm thick. The thickness was accomplished through keeping the chronograph components on the same plane as the gear train, mainspring, and balance. Few others have tackled this feat successfully. It is housed in 43mm of gorgeously polished and brushed steel.
This 1 of 100 Flyback Chronograph LE was produced in a fumé griffé and vertically brushed for a visual tease. Blue might be a little more en vogue, even now. But my god, if my money were on the line it would be this grey. This one shows little wear since production. The highly polished sections of the case and bracelet appear clear. It comes with a full set from a private collector off the forums.
Find this Streamliner Flyback LE here on Watchuseek for 50500 EUR.