One of Hublot’s more recent specialities has been the Essential Grey treatment of popular models, which essentially turns them into monochromatic variants for collectors. This started with the Big Bang Unico Essential Grey and continued with the Spirit of Big Bang Essential Grey, and now we have a third instalment, the Hublot Classic Fusion Essential Grey. Two Classic Fusion models, 42mm and 45mm, are included for 2024 in what’s become an annual tradition and feature titanium cases for that monochrome aesthetic.

As mentioned, there’s a 42mm and 45mm Essential Grey model in satin-brushed/polished titanium with all of the Hublot Classic Fusion highlights: an integrated bracelet, six external and functional screws with H-shaped heads on a satin-finished bezel and a simple time/date-only design. Unlike most manufacturers, the difference in case size goes beyond just looks, as each has its own distinctive movement designed for the case volume. Perhaps a bit superfluous, but cool nonetheless. Both come with a matching grey rubber/grey fabric strap with a stainless steel deployant buckle. An AR sapphire crystal protects the dial, and there’s a sapphire exhibition caseback.

The Hublot Classic Fusion 42mm case has a height of 10.4mm and uses the HUB1110 calibre with 25 jewels, a beat rate of 28,800vph (4Hz) and a power reserve of 42 hours. It’s only 3.61mm in height for the smaller case. The 45mm case has a height of 10.95mm and comes with the HUB1112 calibre, that’s thicker at 4.26mm. Relevant specs are otherwise the same, so there are no performance advantages with either model. Both movements are based on the Sellita SW300-1 automatic (itself based on ETA’s 2892A). Functions are limited to central hours, minutes, hacking seconds and date. The two models have a water-resistance rating of 50 metres.

The dials are nigh identical with a grey sunburst finish and faceted applied indices. There are matching, baton-style hour and minute hands and the seconds hand has Hublot’s logo as a counterweight. A date window sits at 3 o’clock. The overall aesthetic is much simpler than Hublot’s louder pieces, including the other two Essential Grey collections, but the Hublot Classic Fusion is based on the brand’s original piece from 1980, a 1970s-inspired integrated luxury sports watch.