Longines has gone to its archives for inspiration this year, launching three new timepieces that pay homage to vintage designs: the Longines Equestrian Pocket Watch Jockey 1878; the Longines RailRoad; and the Longines Heritage 1918. All three, introduced this week at Baselworld, are faithful recreations of the originals.
The Heritage 1918 is inspired by the brand’s first bracelet-chronographs, retaining original details such as the blued-steel hands with honey-colored varnish, matching honey-colored numerals and strap, and a white lacquered, polished dial. It contains the automatic Caliber L615 with a 42-hour power reserve. The stainless steel case is 41 mm, priced at $1,850. There is a scaled down ladies’ version, with a 38.5-mm case and a carat of diamonds set into the bezel. The 38.5-mm model with diamonds is priced at $5,650 (without diamonds, $1,750).
The Longines Equestrian Pocket Watch Jockey 1878 is a direct nod to Longines’ equestrian roots, replicating a model fitted with the first chronograph ever produced by Longines. Original details include the large onion crown – also used as the chronograph pusher – slim Roman numerals, blued steel Breguet-style minute and hour hands, ball-counterweight seconds hands, a caseback engraved with a horse and rider, a chronograph central seconds hand, and a small-seconds subdial at 6 o’clock. The 55-mm case is 18k rose gold. The watch is a limited edition of 20 pieces and contains a the manual-wound chronograph Caliber L790.2, with a 48-hour power reserve. It is priced at 35,000 euros.
The original models of the Equestrian Pocket Watch Jockey 1878 and the Heritage 1918 are displayed at the Longines Museum in Saint-Imier.
The Railroad watch is inspired by a 1960s model developed for railwaymen, replicating the important elements of high precision and legibility. Like the original, the dial is marked with the letters “RR,” followed by the caliber number – “280” on the original and “888” on the reissued model, referencing the automatic Caliber L888.2, which is exclusive to Longines. Like the original, the caseback is engraved with a steam engine, a depiction that adorned pocketwatches designed for railway companies in the 1920s. The 40-mm case is stainless steel and it features a box-style crystal. The dial is highly readable, with large, black Arabic numerals against a white background, including a prominent 24-hour scale on the inner track. It is priced at $1,850.
Nice, and glad to see they finally reissued a heritage watch without the date. The window ruins the others.