While the Daytona Ultimatum auction and the rest of the GWA7 – Geneva Watch Auction 7 by Phillips Watches – brought several impressive results (including a CHF 5M hammer price for the ‘Unicorn’ white gold Daytona), another properly interesting result should be credited to A. Lange & Söhne, with the unique 1815 ‘Homage To Walter Lange’ in steel with black enamel dial hammered for CHF 852,500 (incl. buyer’s premium). And yes, it’s a new record for a Lange wristwatch at auction, and yes proceeds will be given to a charity.
The CHF 852,500 obtained by Phillips Watches / Aurel Bacs and A. Lange & Söhne Is impressive indeed and sets a new world record for a Lange wristwatch at an auction – even if there were previous watches in Lange’s collection priced above that (the Grande Complication and its 2 million price tag for instance).
Yet, knowing that the regular models of this 1815 ‘Homage To Walter Lange’ retail for EUR 47,000 (approx. CHF 56,000), this makes quite a premium for this unique edition – and in fact, thankfully, as proceeds are given to a charity (to Children Action, a Swiss charitable foundation that protects children’s rights).
At the SIHH 2018, A. Lange & Söhne, which founder Walter Lange passed away in January 2017, decided to create a tribute watch to this humble and visionary man. The watch itself uses a complication created by Ferdinand Adolph Lange, Walter Lange’s great-grandfather, in 1867: the jumping sweep seconds hand with the start/stop function. This invention was especially significant for Walter Lange, as it was first implemented in a watch by his grandfather, Emil Lange, in 1877. A true family affair.
In addition to three gold models, Lange created a unique piece in stainless steel with a black enamel dial. Knowing how rare steel watches by Lange are (only a few dozens around, all being special orders), knowing the link to the brand’s founder and knowing that the proceeds were to be given for a good cause, this certainly helped the watch to sell for such an impressive price.