Tutima is a prime example of a small family owned business that has taken firm hold of its roots and quietly and consistently moved full steam ahead. This German brand has long been associated with pilot’s watches (almost since its 1927 inception) — building strong and reliable instruments for decades. A couple of years ago, the brand announced intentions to build all new workshops in Glashutte — their original roots in the pre-Berlin Wall days. The brand also announced its foray into upper echelon watchmaking – revealing at last year’s BaselWorld its first minute repeater.
Tutima fans held their collective breath – for almost a year. Would this brand so entrenched in the world of pilot watches abandon its codes and move strictly in to the realm of haute horlogerie? Would this brand forget its loyal followers? Marketing of products from Tutima was quiet, while the celebration of its state-of-the-art facilities was expansive – and rightly so. The Tutima Manufacture is a wonderful progression for the brand – and, as witnessed at this year’s BaselWorld, for the brand’s fans, as well.
This year, Tutima unveils its newest chapter in life and time – unveiling four collections that are extremely focused on the brands German heritage and sporty roots. Among its newest “Made in Glashutte” lines: the next generation of the Grand Flieger; the new M-2 series; the Saxon One; Patria. Each line is completely made in house in Glashutte, and utilizes a variety of new in-house movements, including the T321 chronograph and the T330 three-hand automatic.
The Grand Flieger has been totally redesigned and is a remarkable new rendition of a 1940’s piece. Water resistant to 200 meters, it is available as a three-hand automatic with date (at about $2,300), or as a chronograph at $5,600. The 43mm line includes the Airport and the UTC versions. The M-2 represents a new generation of NATO chronographs crafted in titanium with the flight hand that we so love, integrated pushbuttons and screw-down caseback to protect it from shock. The 46-1/2mm case is water resistant to 300 meters, and the watch house the new Tutima Caliber 321; it retails for between $6,900 and $7,800. The Saxon One collection represents the brand’s fresh start emerging from the Glashutte workshops, with prices of these 44mm sporty elegant steel watches ranging from $4,500 for a three-hand automatic to $8,000 for the chronograph.
The new Patria (which translates to “homeland”) houses the manually wound T617 caliber and takes its design inspiration from the Minute Repeater. Two versions are offered: a Small Seconds; Dual Time. Reserved, elegant and sophisticated, the watch is offered in 18-karat rose gold with a meticulously finished movement with three-quarter plate. The retail here is about $19,000. Of course, the alluring minute repeater remains in the line – retailing for $244,000 in rose gold and $258,000 in platinum.
So, the answer is – Tutima did not abandon followers – instead it polished, revamped and reenergized – with an entire collection worthy of old fans and new collectors. Bravo.