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We’ve taken it upon ourselves to bring you the latest, most noteworthy drops to ‘watch’ this year, from the Pasha de Cartier to the Montblanc 1858 Geosphere.
Much has changed in the horology landscape this year. COVID-19 has officially forced both Baselworld and Watches and Wonders to postpone their shows to next year. The big five – Rolex, Patek Philippe, Chanel, Chopard and Tudor – have also announced that they are leaving Baselworld, only to be followed by Hublot, TAG Heuer and Bulgari.
Nevertheless, the world’s most prestigious watch manufacturers – notwithstanding Rolex and Tudor, which have decided to postpone new model releases indefinitely – have now released their novelties for 2020.
With the world’s largest trade shows and product launch schedules in a jumble, we’ve taken it upon ourselves to bring you the latest, most noteworthy drops to ‘watch’ this year.
IWC Schaffhausen Portugieser Perpetual Calendar
For the first time, IWC’s iconic Portugieser collection is getting a model fitted with a perpetual calendar movement in the 82000-calibre family. The new Portugieser Perpetual Calendar 42 features the date, month and day of the week via three subdials at the 3, 6 and 9 o’clock positions. A perpetual moon phase display is also integrated into the month display and deviates from the actual orbit of the moon by only one day after 577.5 years. It comes in three 42mm variations: two models housed in an 18-carat 5N gold case and a third in stainless steel. W iwc.com
Bulgari Bulgari Cities Special Edition 2020
Designed for an urban lifestyle, the new Bulgari Cities Special Edition collection is made up of nine watches inspired by cities that have hosted Bulgari in the past: Rome, Tokyo, Dubai, Paris, London, Ibiza, Milan, Mexico City and New York. Each City Edition comes with a set of twelve art prints designed by one of nine talented young artists commissioned to share their vision of those cities and their connection to Bulgari. The modern, sporty watch comes in a 41mm case treated with black DLC (Diamond Like Carbon), featuring a bezel engraved with the Bulgari logo at the top and one of the nine cities at the bottom. It is powered by an automatic winding BVL 191 calibre manufacture movement, completed by two straps that can be used interchangeably: brown calf leather and black rubber.
Piaget Limelight Gala collection
Ahead of the now-postponed Watches and Wonders 2020, Piaget unveiled the new Limelight Gala Precious Sapphire Gradient – a celebration of the Manufacture’s four pillars of excellence. Joining the Limelight Gala collection are three additional Haute-Joaillerie timepieces, three Limelight Gala Precious Aventurine Glass models (pictured above) and the Limelight Gala Precious Rose Gold. Each model is highlighted by dazzling diamonds and/or precious stones set expertly by hand in a gradient of sizes.
On a separate note, Piaget has also put its record-breaking 2mm thin Altiplano Ultimate Concept (which we got upclose and personal with last year) into production, so you can now own the thinnest mechanical watch in the world. W piaget.com
Vacheron Constantin Traditionnelle Tourbillon Chronograph
Vacheron Constantin has released a host of exciting new models this year, but the Traditionnelle Tourbillon Chronograph captures our attention for one outstanding reason. It is the first timepiece from the brand to combine the precision of a monopusher chronograph with the sophistication of a tourbillon. The eye-catching tourbillon takes pride of place at 12 o’clock, with a power-reserve indication positioned at 6 o’clock and a 45-minute chronograph counter at 3 o’clock. It is available in a 42.5mm case made of 18k 5N pink gold with a transparent sapphire crystal caseback, encasing an in-house manufactured 3200 calibre. W vacheronconstantin.com
Montblanc 1858 Geosphere
Staying true to its vintage charm while introducing upgrades for the modern context, Montblanc presents the new 1858 Geosphere. The watch dial retains the original 1930s Montblanc logo, railway minute tracks and specially engraved tribute to the Seven Summits. However, the numerals, cloissonné-designed cathedral-shaped hands and world time dials are now coated in white SuperLumiNova®, which offer a striking contrast against the gradient blue ceramic inlay. Also new is the grade 5 titanium case, resulting in a lighter watch in addition to offering lower thermal conductivity and improved scratch-resistance. A new bi-metal bracelet marks the entire 1858 line, complemented by leather straps and a high-quality woven blue “NATO” strap as optional accessories. W montblanc.com
Chopard L.U.C Perpetual Twin
Since its launch in 2016, the Chopard L.U.C Perpetual Twin remains the only chronometer-certified perpetual calendar watch in stainless steel. This year, the Maison is introducing two new iterations: one in the same robust material but with a rich blue dial, and another in 18k rose gold – a first for the model. Both variations are updated with minimalist hour markers that have replaced previous Roman numerals. A big date forms the central point of the dial, accompanied by three sub-dials indicating the week, month and leap year count, plus a small seconds at 6 o’clock. Powering the watch is an automatic in-house calibre L.U.C 96.22-L movement with a 22k micro-rotor delivering a 65-hour power reserve. W chopard.com
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Control Chronograph Calendar
Headlining Jaeger-LeCoultre’s recently updated Master Control line is this Master Control Chronograph Calendar timepiece – a first-of-its-kind for the brand. To power the unique combination of a chronograph with a complete calendar and moon phase display, the watch houses a new JLC 759 calibre automatic mechanical movement with a power reserve of 65 hours. It comes in a 40mm stainless steel case, featuring a silver sunray dial and leather straps. W jaegerlecoultre.com
Cartier Pasha de Cartier
First conceived in 1985, the Pasha de Cartier is making a comeback this year with more personalisation features. Launching in 35mm and 41mm models, the fresh interpretations pay respect to the original composition of a square filigree railtrack within a circle on the dial, as well as oversized Arabic numerals at the quarters and signature winding crown cover.
More refined than ever, the new winding crown features a blue spinel or sapphire, hidden under the crown cover which now offers custom-engraved initials. Additionally, an innovative ‘QuickSwitch’ system allows owners to easily swap the steel, gold or leather bracelets; whereas the ‘SmartLink’ system allows for adjustment of the chain links. Completing the watch is an 1847 MC Calibre protected by a paramagnetic alloy case that provides greater resistance to magnetic fields.
(P.S: Did you know there’s also a Cartier perfume that shares its namesake?)
Photos: Courtesy of respective brands