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Editor’s Pick: MB&F’s Automotive-Inspired HM8 Watch

This year’s launch is a throwback to the brand’s earlier designs and Can-Am racing.

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If there’s one thing Max Büsser and his friends have come to be known for, it is creating highly inventive and potentially subversive watches. Inspired by two of MB&F’s more popular designs, the HM3 and HM5, this year’s Horological Machine No. 8 is more of a refinement rather than a wholly new innovation. And even for a brand known for its creativity in the watch world, just how inventive can you get before you start reaching a plateau?

Although the design isn’t particularly inventive for an MB&F creation, the HM8 is stunning. Even with the defining forms of the Amida-styled HM5, the HM3 Frog’s winding battle-axe rotor and classic racing roll bars combined in a single chassis, the design of the HM8 is still sleek and unfussy.

The HM8 takes its main design cues from Can-Am, the Canadian-American Challenge Cup that ran from 1966 to 1987, which would have celebrated its 50th anniversary this year if it had continued. What defined Can-Am was its no holds barred approach to automotive design. Teams like McLaren and Porsche were allowed to go crazy when playing around with engine size, turbocharging and aerodynamics.

The HM8 Can-Am comes in two colours: the 18K white gold/titanium and 18K red gold/titanium. One of the key features is the presence of roll bars on the time piece which were milled from grade 5 titanium. In addition to the highly polished roll bars, the HM8 also features two windows on the flip side that are reminiscent of the sumps in a car. Under the sapphire crystal hood is the HM8’s engine — a 247-component movement developed by MB&F from a Girard-Perregaux base calibre and an automatic blue 22k gold battle-axe rotor.

Like the HM5, the HM8 features a vertical display inspired by Amida watches. Because you don’t have to tilt the watch to tell the time, the HM8 makes an ideal driving watch. The use of sapphire crystal here and in the two optical prisms allows for better visibility of the hour and minute numerals. Combined with the use of Super-LumiNova on the disc dials, the displays are visible even under low light conditions. 

The MB&F HM8 Can-Am retails at SGD127,700 and is exclusively distributed in Singapore by The Hour Glass.

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