With Branson and Bezos skyrocketing themselves into space recently, Urwerk’s latest watch feels like a timely launch. While the niche independent Swiss watchmaker has always been known for making futuristic pieces with unusual time displays, the latest UR-100V P.02 pays tribute to the experience of piloting a rocket with a dial that tracks the typical launch and landing sequences of the Space Shuttle Program in minutes.
There is, of course, a catch: You have to be part of an exclusive club to get your hands on one. Urwerk created the piece for Collective, a California-based watch-collecting group founded by two Facebook executives. Asher Rapkin and Gabe Reilly organized the group as a way to hone in on their friends’ shared love of the art of timekeeping. It quickly garnered high-profile members such as Hollywood producers and Grammy Award-winning musicians, entrepreneurs and business tycoons. It has since expanded to include collectors all over the country but remains exclusive in terms of numbers. As of this year, there are just 75 members. When the group started to discuss the difficulty of getting their hands on limited editions, they decided to create their own by partnering with brands to create watches exclusively for their members.
Including Urwerk, Collective now has four exclusive watch collaborations under its belt. Previously, they released a steel Zenith Chronomaster El Primero C.01 with a minimalist white dial; an engine-turned meteorite dial P.01 timepiece from American watchmaker Joshua Shapiro; and a steel H. Moser & Cie. Pioneer Centre Seconds Rotating Bezel C.02 with a green fumé dial. The Portfolio Series (delineated by P.01 and P.02) is reserved for much smaller independent watchmakers, while the Collective Series (C.01, C.02 and C.03) denote collaborations with the more established brands.
The Urwerk UR-100V P.02 is limited to just 20 pieces at $62,500 each and available only to members. Its apertures reveal the approximate location of the space shuttle at each phase of launch and landing. Green indicates the shuttle on earth, while blue notates the shuttle traveling through Earth’s sky or lower atmosphere. Finally, red signals the moment the shuttle has reached the upper atmosphere and black registers time in space. “We loved Urwerk’s use of orbiting satellite hours and minute hands for the UR-100 SpaceTime launched in 2019, but we saw an opportunity to tell a different story,” says Reilly in a statement. “If Urwerk were to create a watch that was a tribute to the space shuttle prototype, Enterprise, what would that be?”
The UR-100V, which debuted in 2020 following the UR-100 launch, tracked kilometers traveled on the equator in 20 minutes and the kilometers the earth covered around the sun in the same period. Collective’s latest version uses two lateral apertures to track the timing of both take-off and landing for the Space Shuttle. A custom-made manual provides great detail into that process, allowing the wearer to experience the same period of time that an astronaut might have when launching or landing a mission.
Of course, you could pay the multi-million dollar price tag for a ride with Musk or Bezos for the memory of a lifetime, but Collective and Urwerk’s five-figure timepiece is about owning an ultra-exclusive version of an already rare watch that celebrates the art of modern and forward-thinking watchmaking at its best. The UR-100V P.02 is available to current Collective members as well as prospective new members. The criteria for joining, according to Rapkin and Reilly, is a demonstrated genuine interest in collecting with the idea that each new member will bring an interesting new perspective to the group. Membership applications are available at Collective Horology and the watch will be distributed by Goldsmith & Complications in Del Rey Beach, Florida—the new niche boutique by Danny Goldsmith, formerly of Cellini in New York.
The Collective project also has a goal of giving back with $50,000 of the proceeds going to the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum. The space shuttle, Enterprise, is on permanent display there and Rapkin and Reilly want to ensure that its stories of “bravery and innovation will be told for generations to come.”