Ultra’s heritage goes back to the XVIII° Century and has its roots in the House of Paul Maillardet & Fils in Morteau, the French clock making capital. Henri, first of the Maillardet, was the partner of the Jacquet-Droz family and used to build with his brothers numerous made-to-order automatons for the Kings and Emperors of that time, raising awareness around his family name.
The Maillardet family’s expertise in making precise and reliable pocket watches was widely recognized and Ultra’s trademark was registered.
Pierre Maillardet decided to take over the Geismar & Co. company and workshop in Besancon, which was located in the iconic Teragnoz Mill building. The goal of the acquisition was to provide the company with a full in-house movement production line to obtain the status of Manufacture.
Thanks to Pierre’s ambition and Geismar & Co.’s technical savoir-faire, ULTRA Sarl manufacture was established, becoming one of the most highly trusted and durable pocket watch houses in the French clockmaking scene. Developing wrist-watch movements and mechanical innovations following the Cal.41, Ultra has been the first manufacture to produce a French automatic watches.
Ultra clocks were featured in the dashboard of the latest version of the Citroen DS 19, which was the French President’s car and the favorite of General de Gaulle.
In 1963, the new Citroën DS 19 and ID 19 were launched with Ultra clocks on their dashboards, raising the marque to a new standard of quality. Designed by Italian sculptor and industrial designer Flaminio Bertoni and aeronautical engineer André Lefebvre, the DS was renowned for its futuristic aerodynamic lines and innovative technology. Taking advantage of this situation, the company is teaming up with speedometer manufacturer E.D. Veglia to sell clocks to other car brands. Ultra-Veglia clocks appeared on several other Citroën and Peugeot models in the years that followed.
Ultra launches new iconic watch models, embody the long French heritage and tradition that characterize the brand. The elegance in the movement and the essentiality in the design have become therefore the symbol of timeless simplicity and effortlessly class of contemporary men and women.