If I look at the watches I’ve owned or admired over the years, both sporty and dressy, they all have simple, uncluttered dials. Dots and dashes are usually all I require for perfect legibility and style. Of course, I also expect a reasonable degree of water resistance, as I’m not about to leave my watch pool-side.
There is definitely cause for celebration over grand gestures of handicraft and complexity but, even when it comes to chronographs, maximum is two sub-dials. And then, my world was blessed with the H. Moser & Cie Streamliner. Early in 2020, H. Moser & Cie took contemporary chronograph design to the next level with its sculptural brushed-stainless-steel Streamliner Flyback Chronograph Automatic.
This minimalist sports luxury timepiece with its uncluttered anthracite grey dial marked the new decade for the company with an entirely new product line featuring a unique case design and a new movement — its first automatic chronograph. It also secured it a coveted Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève award in the category later that year.
The Streamliner was the first integrated automatic chronograph with a central display to offer a flyback function for the minutes and seconds. I would have to wait two years to actually experience one of these entirely gush-worthy watches on my wrist. Alas, that one was made in limited numbers and later editions, including the Centre Seconds, remain top of my “some-day” wish list. This elegant 42.3 x 14.2mm cushion-shaped collection takes its inspiration from the stopwatches of the 1960s and 1970s, and the futuristic aerodynamic lines of high-speed trains of the 1920s and 1930s penned by one of my design heroes, Raymond Loewy. The Streamliner pulled into the station amid mounting attention on all-steel versions of premium sports watches, and while its integrated steel bracelet is very much part of its fluid design and appeal, the new red-gold boutique edition with Matrix Green fumé dial and rubber strap is just as much of a heart-stopper.
Company CEO Edouard Meylan describes the Streamliner as “a chronograph which displays the time rather than a watch which features a chronograph”. Clear of any sub-dials, the Streamliner adheres to H. Moser’s minimalist design philosophy, which, in this case, takes the essence of a chronograph to create something understated, focused on ergonomics and legibility. There is a tachymeter scale around the circumference with white and red minute tracks measuring the seconds (outer) and minutes (inner).
A prominent “60” replaces the 12 o’clock position and is a reference to early stopwatches. All hands are centrally mounted: the chronograph’s seconds hand is red while the central seconds hand is rhodium-plated; broader three-dimensional curved hands read the time and feature Super-LumiNova inserts. The off-centre crown is at 4 o’clock and two chronograph pushers are positioned at 10 and 2 o’clock. Unmistakably H. Moser, even the new transparent lacquer logo is an unobtrusive touch on the dial. At its heart is the calibre HMC 907, an update on the original HMC 902, now offering 72 hours of power reserve.
First featured in the all-steel Funky Blue 2.0 dial edition earlier this year, the automatic HMC 907 was developed in partnership with co-owned Agenhor (the parent company is Melb Holding Group), the manufacturer of complex mechanics and movements known for its exceptional attention to detail, quality, and technical prowess. Based on the AgenGraphe movement, the HMC 907 is on full view through the open case back, thanks to its tungsten oscillating weight being placed between the movement and the dial.
Versatile and stylish, the Streamliner has water resistance of 120m.
Available through H. Mosier & Cie boutiques and online.
For local inquiries, Boutique Haute Horlogerie 011 325 4119
• From the August edition of Wanted, 2023.