Vacheron Constantin introduced its Harmony collection — a new series with distinctive, cushion-shaped cases — during the brand’s 260th anniversary year of 2015. This year, the collection expands with 10 all-new references, all of which make their U.S. debut next week at WatchTime New York (tickets and info here). Here’s a preview of the highlight pieces.
The 10 new references in the Vacheron Constantin Harmony collection — whose case design and graphic elements were inspired by one of the brand’s first wrist-worn chronographs from 1928 — include a monopusher chronograph with tourbillon, a monopusher chronograph with a pulsimeter scale, a double-pusher chronograph, a dual-time display watch, and a complete calendar, as well as “Small Model” versions of the chronograph and dual-time. While the watches retain the signature look of the Harmony collection — with curved casebands, square bezels, and round crystals — the new models are distinguished from those in the first wave, all of which were limited editions, by their anthracite-colored numerals (instead of the originals’ blue ones); opaline silvered dials (rather than opaline white); a new, more contemporary numeral font for the subdial counters; a reworked burgundy highlight color; and the addition of railway track minute circles. Like the first Harmony models — and all watches made by Vacheron Constantin — the new ones have all met the stringent standards of precision, durability, and watchmaking mastery required to earn the prestigious Hallmark of Geneva.
A new complication joins the Harmony collection with the debut of the Harmony Complete Calendar (below), which has a rose-gold case and a dark brown, hand-stitched alligator strap. The date is indicated by a central hand culminating in a burgundy crescent, which points to a 1-through-31 scale around the rim of the dial. The day and month, also in burgundy, appear side-by-side in apertures in the upper half of the dial, while the moon-phase display and age of the moon dominate the lower half. Unlike most conventional moon-phase indicators, which require correction every three years, this one will require adjustment only once every 122 years. Vacheron developed an all-new self-winding movement, Caliber 2460 QC, to power this watch’s array of functions. Composed of 308 components, and with its high-end finishing visible through a sapphire caseback, it beats at a frequency of 4 Hz and offers a power reserve of 40 hours.
The Harmony Tourbillon Chronograph (below) combines a monopusher chronograph with a large tourbillon shaped like Vacheron’s famous Maltese cross emblem. The movement is the manual-winding Caliber 3200, whose meticulous details include another Maltese cross motif adorning the screw that holds the chronograph’s column wheel. Seven years in the R&D stage, this entirely in-house-produced movement was unveiled to mark the brand’s 260th anniversary and incorporates a number of technologically advanced features to heighten precision and reliability and enhance user friendliness — like the “dragging-display” 45-minute chronograph counter, which replaces a more conventional 30-minute counter, and the lower 2.5 Hz balance frequency, which allows for a better view of the tourbillon’s rotations. Sporting a 42 mm x 42 mm rose gold case, the Tourbillon Chronograph will be available exclusively at Vacheron Constantin boutiques.
A contemporary reincarnation of the 1928 chronograph watch that inspired the entire Harmony collection, the Harmony Chronograph (below) is housed in a 42 mm x 52 mm rose-gold case and is powered by manual-winding, in-house Caliber 3300, which carries a substantial 65-hour power reserve. The watch features central hours and minutes and a small seconds subdial at 9 o’clock, a power-reserve indicator at 6 o’clock, and a monopusher chronograph with a pulsimeter scale. Like the 1928 original, an example of so-called vintage “medical watches,” it has a graduated scale around the rim of the dial — here painted in the collection’s burgundy highlight color — which can be used by doctors to calculate a patient’s pulse based on 30 heartbeats. The famous Maltese cross is evident again in the movement’s details, such as the chronograph gears cut out to form the cross’s shape and the column-wheel holding screw also adorned with the emblem.
At a more modest 37 mm wide, the Harmony Chronograph Small Model is suitable for ladies but also for men who prefer a smaller, more vintage-looking style. The ladies’ diamond-set version (below) has a bezel set with 84 high-quality round-cut diamonds totaling 1.2 carats. The movement is the manual-winding, chronograph-equipped Caliber 1142, an improved version of an existing movement that now meets the Hallmark of Geneva criteria. Promising a 48-hour power reserve, the 164-part movement also boasts a higher frequency designed to increase the shock resistance of the balance wheel. Both the diamond-set and non-diamond-set versions have 5n rose gold cases and are mounted on warm gray alligator leather straps.
The Harmony Dual Time, also available in Small Model and diamond-set versions, contains Vacheron’s self-winding Calibre 2460 DT, which provides a dual-time display (on the subdial at 4:30) as well as a day/night indication (on the subdial at 7:30). The sophisticated mechanism enables easy correction of all indications via the crown: a first notch enables simultaneous adjustment of local time and a second time zone, while a second notch activates travel time alone. The movement offers a 40-hour power reserve and boasts hand decorations on many of its 233 parts. Five models are available: two men’s versions with 40 mm x 49.3 mm cases in white gold (below) or rose gold, plus the three Small Model versions, in 37 mm x 46.6 mm cases, one in non-gemset rose gold and two others in white gold or rose gold with a diamond set bezels.
The best news? You don’t have to wait until the new Vacheron Constantin Harmony collection models make their way to boutiques and other retailers to see and try them on. Reserve your ticket for WatchTime New York, at Manhattan’s Gotham Hall on October 14-15, to experience these and dozens of other new timepieces from an array of luxury watch brands.