Vacheron Constantin

Tourbillon Watches


Patented in 1801 for pocket watches, the tourbillon was designed to compensate the negative effects of earth's gravity on the movement's rate: always in a vertical position, the watch would suffer from chronometric deficiencies caused by the force of gravity on the oscillations of the balance wheel and the balance spring.

Extreme precision

The tourbillon, consisting of a mobile cage, which usually turns on itself in one minute, and the watch's regulating organs, namely the balance wheel, the balance spring, and the escapement, enables this harmful influence on the regularity of the movement and, consequently, on the precision of the watch, to be cancelled out by this permanent rotation, at 360°.


Assembling a tourbillon carriage, with its 60 to 80 aluminum or titanium components, requires singular expertise and dexterity: tiny in size, it usually weighs less than a gram. But when this heart starts beating at 6 o'clock, the watch literally comes to life before your eyes and you will be hypnotized by this regular dance. Whether you are a watch enthusiast or an occasional wearer, count how many times you stop during the day to observe the beating of your watch on your wrist!


While the tourbillon now has an aesthetic role in a mechanical wristwatch, it also gives it the status of a timeless objet d'art that can be passed down from generation to generation, embodying the values of craftsmanship and age-old know-how. At Vacheron Constantin, it expresses these values even more because it reflects the history of the company itself: the design of the tourbillon cage is inspired by the Maltese Cross. In addition, the Manufacture pays particular attention to its finishes (bevelling, blocked polishing) in order to allow the light to be reflected in it and to respect the rigorous criteria of the Poinçon de Genève.

Since its creation more than 220 years ago, this complication has nevertheless undergone several evolutions.

Watchmakers have continued to perfect its rotation system. A new generation of tourbillons with several simultaneous axes of rotation (double or triple) has appeared. Some watch models have unveiled movements with two or even three tourbillons. The flying tourbillon, which appeared in 1920, gives the impression of being suspended in space: with the elimination of the bridge, it is held by only one side. A magical effect!


In all cases, the tourbillon allows a play of transparency and geometry in the design of the dials. An expression of fine watchmaking, a condensation of mechanics, it gives the watch a unique and fascinating face. If you would like to discover the unique character of a tourbillon watch in person, visit a Vacheron Constantin boutique or speak to one of our concierges.

Discover all our tourbillon watches

Browse through our tourbillon watches and dive into the heart of the Vacheron Constantin collections.

All Tourbillon watches

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