It’s true… The SIHH 2018 hasn’t started yet. However, as every year, the game of the “pre-SIHH” watches (novelties introduced as teasers for what is to come during the fair) brought its dosage of new watches. In order to prepare yourself for what’s coming in a week, here is a short recap of the main novelties already introduced as part of the SIHH 2018 collections.
A. Lange & Söhne 1815″Homage to Walter Lange”
Last year, right during the SIHH 2017, the founder of the modern side of A. Lange & Söhne and the direct descendant of Ferdinand Adolph Lange, who founded the company on 7 December 1845, sadly passed away. To pay a tribute to this humble and charming man, the brand will officially unveil at the SIHH 2018 the 1815 “Homage to Walter Lange”.
Inside this watch is a surprising and unexpected complication: a stoppable jumping seconds hand that dates back to a 150-year-old invention conceived by Ferdinand Adolph Lange. As you can see, there are two second’s hands on this watch. The small second is a classical sweeping hand, making 6 jumps per second thanks to the 21,600vph beat rate. The central second hand is different, as it performs precise jumps from second to second, meaning that it is always perfectly aligned with the markers on the periphery of the dial. In addition to this “seconde morte” feature, the central second hand can run continuously (well, with one-second increments) or be immobilised if needed. A pusher at 2 o’clock starts and stops it.
There will be three limited editions in yellow, rose and white gold, and one piece unique in stainless steel… all four are future collector’s watches, and the steel version will is the grail! More details in our article here.
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Re-Edition
Back in 1993, Audemars Piguet again shocked the industry and collectors with the introduction of the Royal Oak Offshore. This very watch started a new trend: the powerful luxury sports watches which is now used by many (Hublot, AP, Bell & Ross). This watch celebrates its 25th anniversary in 2018 and will be one of the main focusses of the SIHH for AP.
As a teaser for the show, Audemars Piguet presented a faithful re-edition of the first Royal Oak Offshore. Similar to the original version in almost all points, Audemars Piguet has chosen to remain true to the original, all the way. Thus, no surprises, except that this watch looks now much more classic now than it must have been the case, back in 1993. Same blue guilloche dial, same 42mm steel case and steel bracelet, same rubber pushers and crown, but an updated chronograph movement and a few minor updates. Read all about this Royal Oak Offshore Re-edition ref. 26237ST in our article here.
IWC Tribute to Pallweber
This year, IWC will be celebrating its 150th anniversary. In order to commemorate this jubilee, the brand will present no less than 27 limited edition watches… And we’ve seen most of them, and they rock! Already unveiled to the public was the “tribute to Pallweber”, a surprising piece to say the least.
The Tribute to Pallweber is a completely original watch, a vintage reedition, not of a famed 1960s piece but based on one of the most iconic pocket-watches ever manufactured by IWC, the Pallweber. This 1884 piece showed a fascinating display based on a digital indication of both the hours and minutes – a first back then. Developed in 1884 and based on the Pallweber system developed by a Salzburg-based watchmaker, Josef Pallweber, it showed the hours and minutes with large numerals on rotating discs.
The new version brings back the same display in a large-sized wristwatch. The case, to remain historically relevant, has been shaped like a pocket-watch on which wired lugs were later added. IWC has used lacquered dials that mimic the texture and colour of enamel. To power this unusual display, the brand had to develop a new movement in the name of the in-house Calibre 94200 – a movement truly specific to this Tribute to Pallweber Edition 150 years. All the details about the Pallweber in our hands-on article here.
The 4 watches already presented by IWC as pre-SIHH 2018 novelties
Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso Tribute Duoface “Casa Fagliano”
As a preview of the SIHH 2018 collection, Jaeger-LeCoultre doesn’t surprise – we could even say that they went classic… However, this new Reverso Tribute Duoface “Casa Fagliano” simply works!
It is based on a known watch, the Reverso Tribute Duoface, yet with subtle visual updates. Dauphine hands for the hours and minutes, a small second at 6 and the classic Art-Deco styling for the indexes and tracks. Elegant, refined and combined here with a slate grey sunray plate. Housed in a warm-toned pink gold case measuring here 49.4mm x 29.9mm (thus being the large size for the Reverso collection), the second face displays a Second-time zone and 24-hour day/night indicator. The main attraction for this new edition certainly is the strap, resulting from a collaboration with famed Argentinian bootmakers. Indeed, Casa Fagliano has created a two-tone cordovan leather strap, specially designed and hand-crafted for each piece by these famous Argentinian leather artisans. More details here.
Montblanc Timewalker Manufacture Chronograph
Montblanc as introduced 4 watches as part of the Pre-SIHH 2018 collection, yet the most interesting one clearly is this Timewalker Manufacture Chronograph. Not only it adds some visual updates to an already known model, but what ticks inside is new and, for once, not out-sourced.
The first impression with this Timewalker Manufacture Chronograph is a vintage inspiration: panda dial, 3-6-9 display, aged brown leather strap. But that’s only the visible side. Inside the case is a brand new chronograph movement, calibre MB 25.10, to be seen as an upgrade compared to the reliable but commoner 7750 architecture. We’re talking about an integrated automatic chronograph movement, with column-wheel to start-stop-reset the chronograph functions. As an entry-level option into the manufacture movements, it keeps a more traditional horizontal coupling mechanism. More details in our article here.
Piaget Altiplano Ultimate Automatic 910P
Pleas meet the new thinnest automatic watch in the world. Indeed, after Bulgari won the title in early 2017, Piaget strikes back with the Altiplano Ultimate Automatic 910P and its 4.30mm thick case… Impressive, isn’t it?
The whole concept behind the creation of the Altiplano Ultimate Automatic 910P is based on the researches done on the 900P, which was, when launched in 2014, the thinnest mechanical watch available on the market. To gain space, by removing one of the usual layers, and add strength to the case/movement assembly, the Altiplano 910P uses a unique conception where the main-plate of the movement doesn’t exist anymore as a stand-alone piece. This main-plate was merged with the case-back, which was machined with recesses and holes where the moving parts are mounted directly. Also, again to gain space, we have here a peripheral rotor. The rotor is not turning over or inside the movement but around the movement. This way, Piaget avoids the 1mm or more needed by a centrally mounted rotor. More details here, in our review.
Ulysse Nardin Marine Torpilleur Military
While usually creating pieces inspired by antique Marine Chronometers, this time Ulysse Nardin plays on different inspirations, with the Military Torpilleur. Surprising, yet not unpleasant to look at.
Based on the entry-level watch introduced earlier in 2017, UN adds some tool-ish inspiration, with a fully sandblasted steel case (larger in diameter too) and a new dial with vintage markers and colours, as well as being cleaned – not more date, no more power reserve indicator. The result is a watch that is quite out of the standards, yet that is pleasantly shaped and designed. Inside is an in-house movement, as usual with UN. More details in our hands-on here.
Vacheron Constantin Overseas Dual-Time
Last but not least, Vacheron Constantin adds what certainly is the most practical complication on a daily basis to its great luxury sports watch, the Overseas, becoming a Dual-Time.
Inside is the new Vacheron Constantin Caliber 5110 DT, which allows for the simultaneous reading of two time-zones, hence the name of the watch. The dial layout is clean and very easy to read. Local time is indicated centrally, while the second time-zone (often referred to as ‘home time’) is shown via the smaller hand tipped with a triangular arrow. At 9 o’clock there is a self-explanatory day/night indicator. The Overseas Dual-Time will be available in steel or gold, with various straps and dials (blue or silver). More details here.