Flash News: MB&F Horological Machine N°5 CarbonMacrolon

By Thierry Ané on September 24, 2014

It is hard to tell when MB&F impresses me more: when they unveil a new and completely breathtaking “Horological Machine” or when they manage to reinvent an already existing one for the greatest pleasure of all the brand’s aficionados?

Today, it is the HM5’s turn to be in the limelight again for a new and very exciting version limited to just 66 pieces like its previous two predecessors. This machine’s saga started last year with the HM5 On the Road Again crafted in zirconium.

This Unidentified Horological Object (UHO) followed the long tradition of driving watches with a time display on the side so that it faces the driver/wearer while his hands are on the wheel of his car. In this particular watch, this time display is obtained by projection through a sapphire crystal prism that also magnifies the indications of the hour and minute discs. Green-coloured frames circle the correct time indications.

Styled like the rear windows of 1970s sports cars, the hood of the wedge-shaped case features black “louvres”. When open, they allow light into the movement so that the prism can do its work and makes time visible. Later in the year, MB&F offered a red gold and titanium alternative, the HM5 RT that I have presented hereWatches: MB&F Horological Machine N°5 RT Red Gold and Titanium featuring blue-coloured frames and a definitely more luxurious case.

One needed not be in the loop to guess that after these two beautiful versions, an all-black interpretation would soon follow. As I clearly stated in a recent surveyWatches: The irresistible appeal of black, black watches have an incredible appeal and never go out of fashion, which is always a welcome characteristic for a purchase as significant as a watch. The obvious thing to do would thus have been to cover any metal with a gloomy PVD coating as the brand did with white gold on the HM1 or on titanium for the HM2 Black Box Alain Silberstein, the HM3 Black Frog and the HM4 Final Edition.

The problem here is that MB&F suffered from its own originality! While the HM5’s striking case architecture faithfully echoes the form of the streamlined supercars that inspired it, its sharp corners would make the PVD coating more susceptible to being scratched than a more conventional design. To avoid ruining the beauty of this timepiece, MB&F had a new black material especially developed that could be polished and finished like metal, would feel as solid and substantial as metal, and lastly would be as hard as steel.

The winner was named CarbonMacrolon. It is a composite metal composed of an anthracite polymer matrix injected with carbon nanotubes to add strength and rigidity. This heavy, hard material that you can finish like a metal also offers the advantage of being black right through (it is not a surface treatment), meaning that the HM5 CarbonMacrolon will never lose its dark appeal.

To bring a little light to this stunning timepiece, the coloured frames used to indicate the time are iridescent purple this time, just like the eye-catching battle axe winding rotor visible through the crystal on the back. Like previous versions, this model is also mounted on a sculptured black rubber strap with large holes.

All in all, this HM5 CarbonMacrolon is the perfect addition to this incredible line for the watch lovers who like their watches sportier and darker, just like their cars!

For more information please visit the MB&F web site.

For a technical description of the timepiece and additional pictures: