It was back in 1942 that Ilfo Fontana (aka The Watchmaker) was asked by his country to make a timepiece specifically for Italian naval officers.
Preparations were made, with the Watchmaker ready to ensure that the watches meet the stringent standards and specifications required by the navy. However, before the timepieces could be shipped the deal was aborted. The designs along with the prototypes lay dormant for decades until Ilfo’s nephew, rediscovered them. The prototypes and designs seemed perfect for the modern day horological market and are the foundations for the renowned collection of U-Boat watches seen today.
The Chimera Sideview models boast a profoundly clean appearance, starting life as an initial limited release edition of 99 pieces, all of which will feature a top-tier rattrapante chronograph movement.
With a large 51mm stainless steel case with hidden strap lugs, the new pieces have a completely unique design that retains the signature U-Boat size and crown cap, but aside from this design aspect is distinctly different from the rest of the U-Boat range.
Last year the line was expanded with the addition of the Chimera 48 Carbonio GMT a timepiece that boasted a case featuring forged carbon fibre, the same as employed in Aeronautics, plus a range of smaller size Chimeras with a brand new innovation and featuring a 43mm case. This time, Italo Fontana has unveiled the Chimera “Sideview” range: consisting of two models, one in stainless steel and limited to only 300 pieces, and the other rarer 18k gold model limited to 88 pieces. Both of the models are characterized by sapphire curved glass not only on the face and the back of the timepiece, but also with a side window, with a fumé sapphire glass which allows the movements visibility.
In addition to these, and if the 18k gold version is not enough, there is a limited edition of Chimera Sideview Diamonds which feature on the bezel of the case and on the lugs, 309 black diamonds set by hand, one by one (reversed diamonds on the lugs). The Chimera Sideview Diamonds will be, like the 18k gold version limited to just 88 pieces.