A Closer Look At The Parmigiani Fleurier Tonda PF Micro-Rotor Rose Gold
Parmigiani aficionados, take notice: the Tonda PF Micro-Rotor Rose Gold is true to the iconic Tonda line, but with updates.
If you’re familiar with Parmigiani Fleurier, you’ll know they are relatively new on the scene. Michel Parmigiani founded his eponymous brand 25 years ago, which compared to some of the OGs like Vacheron Constantin (founded in 1755), Patek Philippe (1839), and Rolex (1905), means the brand is very much in its infancy.
However, Michel Parmigiani’s many decades of work as a watchmaker before starting his brand have earned him the trust he deserves. He’s crafted collections of watches that have been very well received, despite, or maybe because of, the brand’s relative youth.
But what’s so special about the Tonda PF Micro-Rotor family? At the time of its launch in 2021, Guido Terreni, CEO of Parmigiani Fleurier, said, “We have conceived the Tonda PF for the watchmaking purists of tomorrow.” The purists he has in mind are “savvy in watchmaking, appreciate sartorial craft on their timepieces, and have a strong sense of style and refinement.”
Fortunately, Watchonista recently got its hands on a Tonda PF Micro-Rotor Rose Gold model for an in-depth inspection. Let’s take a look.
Beauty in Simplicity
At first glance, the Tonda PF Micro-Rotor’s 40mm dial looks unusually sparse. First off, the dial is solid gray with an intricate yet understated grain d’orge guilloché, or barleycorn, pattern. Then, the Parmigiani Fleurier name – positioned prominently on previous Tonda dials – has been replaced by the brand’s subtle and sophisticated oval logo at 12 o’clock.
Next, its 18K rose gold hour indices, while elegant, are proportionally shorter than you would generally expect for a watch of this size. In fact, the only numerals you’ll see are housed within the date window at 6 o’clock. Even the watch’s hands are skeletonized to allow more of the dial’s barleycorn pattern to come into view. It’s certainly a pure look, as Mr. Terreni said, but it is also a refined one.
However, despite its undeniably genteel visage, the dial’s sparseness of design does raise an interesting question: Are its looks too austere, understated, or – gasp – not “special” enough for a watch priced at $53,900? The answer to that question ultimately depends on two things: 1) Who is buying the watch; and, 2) What said person is looking for in a luxury timepiece.
For example, if you already have a chronograph and an annual calendar, you may want this clean-dialed piece to round out your collection. Or, if you tend to have an understated yet elegant style (and deep pockets), this watch is probably perfect for you.
A World-Class Calibre and Bracelet
Whatever the motivation to buy the watch might be, what is not in question is the movement’s beauty and superb craftsmanship. While the watch’s dial is sparse, the sapphire exhibition caseback reveals the richness and complexity of the Tonda PF Micro-Rotor’s movement – the fabled PF703 calibre.
This upgraded automatic calibre has an offset micro-rotor forged in pure platinum. Plus, rather than layered on top of the movement, the micro-rotor is also integrated into it, allowing the Tonda PF Micro-Rotor models a thinner profile than its predecessors.
Additionally, I would be remiss not to mention the Tonda PF Micro-Rotor’s integrated bracelet. It tapers from the full width of the lugs to a narrower breadth as it circles the wearer’s wrist, resulting in increased comfort for all-day wearing. The bracelet also features a horizontal satin finish throughout, including on the lugs.
(Photography by Liam O'Donnell)