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The New Piaget Polo 79

March 15, 2024

Piaget resurrects an old icon–but is it worth the exorbitant price?

In early February, Piaget revived one of its most iconic designs: the original Piaget Polo from 1979. The new edition has effectively adapted the original design for the modern day, retaining the charm and overindulgence of its predecessor while providing some aesthetic and technical refinements. However, the retail price of $73,000 has raised eyebrows.

The Case and Dial

You may immediately notice that the watch is made entirely from 18-karat yellow gold, from the case to the hands. This opulence aligns well with the Piaget brand, which is known for creating lavish timepieces set with precious stones. At 38mm, the case is not quite as small as the original, matching modern tastes while still being vintage-appropriate. Notably, the case is 7.45mm thick. While of course not as striking as the razor-thin original, the new model is still svelte enough to achieve a similar effect. The lack of bezel makes the integration of the bracelet into the case completely seamless. The Polo's most recognizable design element is the alternation of horizontal polished gadroons with brushed gold. For the modern iteration, Piaget has created these gadroons by slotting individual gold elements into the satin-brushed case and bracelet. Due to this construction, there do exist nearly imperceptible gaps between components.

The Movement

The Polo 79 houses the ultra-thin 1200P1 caliber. This movement was developed in-house and features a micro-rotor to keep the height down. It's easy to forget that Piaget is a highly impressive movement maker with a long history of manufacturing some of the slimmest calibers. It was only a few years ago that the company engineered what was the thinnest watch in the world at the time. The 1200P1 delivers a perhaps disappointing 44 hours of power reserve, but the 2.35-millimeter thickness more than makes up for it. The caliber is also well-finished, featuring circular striping, perlage, blued screws, and beveled bridges.

Closing Thoughts

Piaget is late to the game with this release. The integrated sports watch trend is past its prime, making the model much harder to sell now than it would have been just a few years ago. This difficulty isn't helped by the high price, which is far from competitive. At $73,000, the model's price exceeds that of a gold Royal Oak or the similarly vintage-inspired Vacheron Constantin 222. Despite its poor positioning, the design is undeniably iconic, and you can't fault Piaget for its execution.

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