This year, as many of you know, marks the silver jubilee of A. Lange & Söhne’s debut watch launch after the brand was revived by Walter Lange and Günther Blümlein in 1990. It also marks 30 years since the fall of the Berlin Wall, and given the year’s significance to the German watchmaker, you know it’s gonna be a good one.
Lange’s pre-SIHH timepiece, the Lange 1 special edition, was already an exciting glimpse of what to expect. But we also suspected that the brand would be saving its best for 24 October, the actual day of the jubilee. And we’re right. There are additions to existing pieces from Lange at SIHH this year, mostly material or dial differentiations. But only one thoroughbred novelty was introduced.
The Zeitwerk Date
For the digitally inclined looking for an adult version of a numerical display, The Zeitwerk Date adds a new function to its already fascinating design. The Zeitwerk marks its decade of creation and A. Lange & Söhne has thrown in an additional instantaneous date display around the watch. Rather than an outsized date, which would take up too much real estate on the dial, they’ve gone to work on the periphery, adding in a date ring.
The ring itself, made in a light silver, has the numerals cut out via machining. Underneath the ring lies a coloured segment and it’s this component that steps to the right at the stroke of midnight. As such, it retains the purity of the digital display design the Zeitwerk brought to Lange, and minimises the impact on the case as well. They’ve managed to keep the case at 44.2mm, slightly bigger than the original but at the same size as the Zeitwerk Minute Repeater.
An additional special quality to the watch is that the dial itself is made in solid silver, thus commemorating its silver jubilee subtly. The additional date function, with a corrector at 8 o’clock that triggers the date jumping mechanism manually makes the L043.8 movement a new addition to the Lange family.
The watch has all the stops and ingenious technical qualities of the Lange, with the constant-force escapement and slow-oscillating balance, the new balance spring with clamp for stop seconds, and the same 3-day power reserve. We have to say that this is a practical and important addition to the line, and also a reminder of what Lange is today, rather than just be a year of reminiscing about past Lange triumphs.
Existing Watches and Addons
The Richard Lange Jumping Seconds has been a beloved piece since its first release, and now available in a new version in white gold with a black dial, to placate all the austere-loving. The new dial adds a stark elegance to the watch. Within lies the same L094.1 caliber that offers a power reserve of 42 hours.
More exciting is a new honey gold timepiece, the Langematik Perpetual in the special gold alloy Lange helped develop. The limited edition piece (just 100 around the world, reserve yours now), offers up the automatic perpetual calendar timepiece in a honey gold case with a solid silver dial. The outsize date and calendar display is one of the most legible in the business, and safest to operate.
The final new watch from the brand during this fair is the Datograph Perpetual Tourbillon in white gold, with a pink gold dial display. The grand complication timepiece will be limited to 100 pieces, and it marks the second limited edition release of the watch. Being big fans of the Datograph, it’s good to see a new introduction of the Datograph “Up/Down” Lumen.
Given it’s just the start of the year, we’re sure we’ll see plenty more from A. Lange & Söhne each quarter. We’re marking our calendars for 24 October already.