Many brands are looking into their past, either to find inspiration for new models or update some old ones. Revisiting a watch is no easy task, as purists and vintage fans are a tough crowd to please. Still, Longines took a shot at it, and the least we can say is that they managed it quite well. The brand unveils a new collection, definitely inspired by the past. A tribute to the brand’s roots and a look into the future. Styles draw inspiration from the past, while mechanics keep evolving.
True to its reputation : the Longines Conquest V.H.P.
The Saint-Imier based house chose to revisit the Conquest V.H.P, one if its success from the 80s. As the name suggests, precision and accuracy is what this watch is all about. Longines takes advantages of its strengths and the expertise in timekeeping for which the brand is renowned to offer us a highly accurate quartz watch with a degree of precision of about ± 5 s/y. Quite an impressive feat for an analog watch and even more impressive when considering the 5 years battery life.
Even better, and that’s where the future comes in, this watch features a new function to ensure consistent accuracy. Thanks to the new built-in GPD (gear position detection) system, the Longines Conquest V.H.P has the ability to stop and reset its hands after an impact or exposure to a magnetic field. It then goes back to the right time, without any gap. The result is quite impressive visually as well. Also, the watch syncs itself one time a day to provide an optimum precision. A detail worth noting, the watch provides a quick way to set the hours. Simply swiping the crown makes the hour hand go all around the dial.
As far as style goes, Longines offers two different versions of the Conquest. One is a 3 hands/calendar and the other a chronograph. The first one is available with a 41 or 43 mm round case and black, silver, blue or carbon dial. Prices start at 880 euros. The chronograph is starting at 1.440 euros with either a 42 or 44 mm case and the same coloured dials as the 3 hands.
The vintage-looking gem : Longines Heritage 1945
Another piece inspired from the past and unveiled at Baselworld 2017 is the Longines Heritage 1945. This revisited watch is based upon a, you guessed it, 1945 model. The original watch’s origins remain vague but we owe this new version to Benjamin Clymer, over at Hodinkee. He found the original piece in New-York a while back and caught Longines’ attention after posting it on Instagram. We’re sure glad he did, as Longines loved it so much that they decided to update it.
Aesthetically the watch remains the same overall but it went from a 36mm case to a 40mm one, the dial changed from mat salmon to brushed copper and the manual-wound caliber was replaced with an automatic self-wound one. The beige leather strap with a nubuck finish adds a touch of style and appeal. It elegantly marries the sturdiness of the steel case and the warm tones of the brushed coppery dial. The hour circle finishes off the style by alternately displaying Arabic numerals and silvery cabochons, which are respectively traced and stamped. And if the look wasn’t enough to convince you, the 1.720 euros price tag probably will.