This year, at the SIHH 2016, Vacheron Constantin came with a brand new Overseas collection, and they introduced no less than 5 models: the automatic 3-hand 4500V, the Chronograph 5500V, the Ultra-Slim 2000V, the Ultra-Slim Perpetual Calendar and a ladies’ version (that we didn’t cover.) That’s already a complete collection, you could say. Especially for a newly introduced collection. However Vacheron Constantin decided to launch some more Overseas models, and what could make more sense than the sporty chic Overseas with the most befitting complication for this type of watch, a worldtimer. Here’s the new Vacheron Constantin Overseas World Time 7700V. Oh and it comes with the Geneva Hallmark quality seal, and is available in three different colours.
I guess we could say that 2016 is a proper Overseas year for Vacheron Constantin. After a few modest years, in terms of novelties, the brand already made a strong impression with last year’s Harmony collection that comprised a host of new movements. By the end of last year the Genevan brand impressed friend and foe by presenting the most complicated watch in the world. And a few months later, in January of this year Vacheron Constantin introduced a complete new Overseas collection, and again with new in-house developed and manufactured movements. They are on a roll! However Vacheron meant to add some more horological goodness to the already lovely Overseas family, by adding their well-known worldtimer complication. This is by the way, the only (mechanical) worldtimer that indicates the time in 37 time zones around our blue planet.
The Dial – Recently we reviewed thee beautiful worldtimers, all with a worldmap depicted on the dial. Two of these worldtimers – the VC Traditionnelle World Time was one of them – feature a rotatable worldmap in thhe centre of the dial and that makes it easier and faster to see the time in a specific place on earth, at a glance. The new Overseas World Time also features this worldmap on the dial, with nice juxtaposition between the sunburst satin-brushed finished continents and the oceans feature a velvet finish.
Around the worldmap – this way to depict the continents and oceans is called a Lambert projection map – is a translucent lacquered disc bearing the city names. Placed over that city-name ring and the worldmap, is a sapphire disk that provides day/night indications by means of subtly graded smoky tints, which is connected to the 24-hour disc. On the perimeter is a translucent lacquered velvet-finished outer ring that serves to indicate the hours and minutes in each time zone.
Alltogether there are three superimposed dials:
- The worldmap, or actually this is a map of the northern hemisphere, with sunburst satin-finished continents & velvet-finished seas. On the same level is a translucent silver-toned/blue/brown lacquered disc with transferred city names
- A sapphire disc with transferred day/night and 24-hour indications (period between 6.30pm and 6.30am highlighted with a black background)
- Translucent silver-toned/blue/brown lacquered ring, opaline-finished, transferred minute-track
The central hour, minute and second hand are in 18K gold, an dthese are highlighted with white luminescent material for better legibility in dim light conditions. All functions can be set via the crown.
As you have seen in the photos and from the description, there are three interpretations: a blue, a silver-toned and a brown dial. From these images I find it difficult to judge how it looks ‘in the metal’, and it’s even more difficult to pick a favourite, however we’ll keep you posted once we have the change to go hands-on with the new Overseas World Time.
The Case – The stainless steel case measures 43.5 mm in diameter, and is 12.6 mm thick, which immediately makes it the biggest timepiece in the new Overseas collection – the new Overseas Chronograph 5500V is a millimetre smaller in diameter, however it’s a millimetre thicker. Like its Overseas siblings it features a soft iron casing ring to ensure anti-magnetic protection, and the crown is a screwed-down crown. With a water resistance to depths of a 150 metres it is a very practical luxury sports/casual watch, that also looks great to go with a suit and tie. In fact, with its world time complication, it is intended as a traveler’s watch, and I can perfectly imagine that it fulfils all the timing needs of a traveler.
The choice of straps that it comes with, only makes it easier to combined it with various outfits or situations. The steel bracelet can easily be exchanged for a rubber strap, or even an alligator leather strap. The easy-fit system is a very practical solution for exchanging these bracelets, and their folding clasp, without any tools, while guaranteeing the same firm hold as on any traditional fixed bracelet. The entire watch, comprising the beautifully finished in-house movement, the case, dial, and bracelets, has been tested and approved according to the stringent Geneva Hallmark quality seal requirements. The Geneva Hallmark has been stamped onto the movement that is visible through the sapphire pane in the case-back.
The Movement – The photo above show the easy-fit system to exchange bracelets, and you can also see the movement with a thin soft-iron ring surrounding it. The movement at hand is the Vacheron Constantin calibre 2460 WT – WT stands for World Time – and it’s the almost the same movement as used in the previously discussed Vacheron Constantin Traditionnelle World Time. I say almost, because the only real difference between the one in the Traditionnelle WT and this Overseas WT is the rotor: here it features the exact same wind rose rotor, crafted from 22k gold, that is also used for all other new Overseas models.
Vacheron Constantin calibre 2460WT is entire developed, manufactured, finished and assembled in-house and is holds a patent for its worldtimer mechanism. The movement operates at a frequency of 28,800 vibrations per hour and enjoys a 40-hour power reserve. Needless to say… the movement has been finished to the very highest Haute Horlogerie standards; otherwise it would not be adorned with the Geneva Hallmark!
Of all three luxury sports watches from the Holy Trinity (Patek Philippe, Vacheron Constantin and Audemars Piguet) only Vacheron offers one with a worldtimer complication. For this segment – the luxury sports watch segment – it is probably the most useful complication one could imagine. Sure, an ultra thin luxury sports watch with a perpetual calendar looks absolutely great (breathtaking to be honest) and a chronograph adds some extra ‘sportiness’, however in the end a functional and useful worldtimer is a complication that will actually be used frequently by those who travel the world, and/or do business around the world.
Specifications Vacheron Constantin Overseas World Time 7700V
- Case: stainless steel, 43.5 mm in diameter and 12.6 mm thick, sapphire crystal with anti-reflective coating, case back with sapphire crystal pane inset, water resistant to 150 meters
- Movement: calibre 2460 WT, in-house developed and manufactured, finished to the highest Haute Horlogerie standards, 22K gold Overseas oscillating weight, 40 hours of power reserve, frequency of 28,800 vph, Geneva Hallmark
- Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, worldtime in 37 time zones, day/night indication
- Strap: stainless steel bracelet, half Maltese cross-shaped polished and satin-brushed links, delivered with a second black/blue/brown alligator leather strap featuring a black nubuck lining with a micro-perforated effect, hand-stitched, large square scales, and delivered with a third strap in black/blue/brown rubber, triple folding clasp
The official retail price is € 40,200 Euros. More information at the Vacheron Constantin website.