Longines has been scoring hit after hit with their rapidly expanding Heritage collection of watches. And now they’re kicking off 2020 with another one, a revival piece from the late-1940s, the Heritage Classic Chronograph 1946.
Based on a watch that was in production in that timeframe, the new watch features a 40mm stainless steel case with a domed silvered opaline dial and italicized “dolphin” Arabic numerals. A closer look at the numerals reveals that these aren’t simply printed flat, but have a great three dimensional effect to them. The graduated seconds track, thereafter, makes up the outer perimeter of the dial.
The chronograph itself consists of a blued centre seconds hand and a 30-minute totalizer sub-dial at 9 o’clock. The sub-dial at 3 o’clock is the running seconds.
All in all, just an uncomplicated, vintage-styled chronograph that doesn’t have to try too hard to impress. Perhaps what really sets the watch off is this combination of the stark white of the dial set against black numerals and indexes, paired with the blued steel hands.
While the watch remains aesthetically true to its late-1940s predecessor, its movement reflects a modern touch with the self-winding Calibre L895.5 (ETA A31.L21). However, keeping true to the 1940s, the watch has a closed caseback with the brand’s logo from 1889 engraved on the back: the winged hourglass encircled by “EF Co Longines.” EF being the initials of Ernest Francillon, the gentleman who helmed Longines from 1852 and is credited to be the pioneer who perfected manufacturing practices at the brand. Ernest Francillon passed away in 1900, but his influence on Longines and Swiss watchmaking is, no doubt, a deep-seated one. A monument was established in his memory in 1907.
Coming back to the Heritage Classic Chronograph 1946, yet another great addition to Longines’ Heritage collection that’s sure to be another hit for the brand. The Heritage collection, as of recent additions, is slowly but surely transforming into the platform through which Longines continues to tug at the hearts of the most advanced of watch collectors. And this they’re manging to do, while keeping price points on the collection pegged to accessibility.
Self-winding Calibre L895.5 (ETA A31.L21); hours, minutes and small seconds; chronograph with 30-minute totalizer; 54-hour power reserve
40mm stainless steel; water resistant to 30m
Black leather with pin buckle