A. Lange & Söhne Premiers Three New Watches for 2022
In 2022, coveted German watch manufacturer A. Lange & Söhne debuts not one but three superb timepieces: The RICHARD LANGE MINUTE REPEATER, the ODYSSEUS in titanium and the elegant GRAND LANGE 1. Three distinct models connected by a shared dedication to upholding the highest standards of fine watchmaking. The first and second of these new releases have limited production numbers, while the new Grand Lange 1 joins the regular collection. Read on for all the details.
RICHARD LANGE MINUTE REPEATER
Considered one of, if not the most, challenging complications in all of haute horologerie, A. Lange & Söhne has previously demonstrated its mastery of the Minute Repeater. But never quite like this. The epitome of refinement, the new RICHARD LANGE MINUTER REPEATER is offered in an understated 39mm x 9.7mm high platinum case and paired with a discreet, three-part gold base dial with glossy white enamel coating. To the casual observer, this is a simple time-only piece, remarkable only for its flawless finishing. Gently activate the slider on the left-hand side of the case, however, and it is another matter entirely as the watch effortlessly sounds the current time on demand. A low tone for every full hour, a double tone for every quarter hour and a high tone for every further minute.
All of this is made possible, of course, by the new manual-winding movement inside, the 69th in-house calibre of the brand. Several key features have been incorporated by Lange to enhance the performance of its acoustic complication, including a pause elimination and a safety device so that the minute repeater cannot be activated when the crown is pulled out. Likewise, it also prevents the extraction of the crown when the chiming mechanism is active. A third upgrade to the minute repeater is the patented hammer blocker keeping the hammers in their home position for fractions of a second after the gongs have been struck, preventing the rebounding hammers from bouncing and striking the gongs again. Only Lange’s most experienced watchmakers are entrusted with the task of meticulously tuning each of the 50 limited-edition watches like a precious musical instrument. This painstaking process is completed by hand to achieve perfect harmony with the acoustic properties of the platinum case.
The real show though takes place on the rear of the watch. A sapphire glass case back provides a spectacular view of Lange’s new manual winding movement, the Calibre L122.1. A key highlight is, of course, the visible mirror-polished gong hammers, which strike the two polished gongs coiled around the movement. The centrifugal governor rotates at more than 2,000 revolutions per minute when the striking mechanism is activated guaranteeing a uniform cadence of the strikes. Also on display are Lange’s signature finishing techniques, including an untreated German silver three-quarter plate with Glashütte ribbing, polished gold chatons, thermally blued screws and the hand-engraved balance cock. The escapement beats at 21,600vph, and the mainspring barrel delivers power for up to 72 hours.
In 2019, Lange took the watch world completely by surprise with the launch of its first serially-produced steel watch, the Odysseus. An overnight sensation, this exceptional timepiece – along with its white gold counterparts – has become coveted by collectors. In 2022, the German brand builds on this legacy with the new Odysseus Titanium – the first titanium timepiece by A. Lange & Söhne. Like its stablemates, the case of the new titanium version measures 40.5mm x 11.1mm high and is water resistant to 120m.
The ice-blue dial made of brass features white-gold hands and appliques, while the hour and minute hands as well as all hour markers are luminous. Unlike the steel version, the finishing of the case and integrated bracelet is largely matte with sandblasted surfaces – the muted tones more befitting of this sporty material – however, multiple polished accents (the bezel, sides of the case and lugs, and edges of the links) ensure it still catches the eye. Limited to 250 watches, this edition is available exclusively in Australia from the A. Lange & Söhne boutique in Sydney.
GRAND LANGE 1
Also joining the line-up in 2022 is the third generation of Lange’s inimitable Grand Lange 1, now featuring an even thinner case, new dials and several other subtle design tweaks. First debuted in 2003, the Grand Lange 1 started life as an enlarged version of the popular Lange 1 (one of the four founding watches of modern day Lange). Since then, the brand has continued to evolve and refine the series, enabling it to stand apart from the Lange 1 and enhancing its distinct characteristics. In this latest iteration, the case diameter remains a comfortable 41mm but its height has been further reduced by 0.6mm, to 8.2mm, resulting in a an even more enjoyable wearer experience. All the other hallmarks of the Grand Lange 1 are retained though, including stepped lugs, a thin domed bezel and a pusher at 10 o’clock to quickly adjust the outsize date.
This extends to the iconic dial design of the Grand Lange 1, which features an off-centred hours and minutes dial, a small seconds counter, a power reserve at 3 o’clock and the signature outsize date framed window at 1 o’clock. All recessed indications have a pattern with concentric lines and flat applied markers. What is different though, is the finishing of the dial. The solid silver base is now grained, with bevelled chamfers assuring balanced transitions from the subsidiary dials to the granular texture of the main dial. Two case metals are available – 18k white gold with black leather strap, and 18k pink gold with red-brown strap. Both feature the same dark grey, grained dial, while the hands and markers match the colour of the respective cases. The movement inside – visible through a sapphire case back – remains unchanged from the previous generation. The hand-wound manufacture Calibre L095.1 features a single mainspring barrel and can store up to 72 hours of energy when fully wound. As you would expect it is beautifully decorated to Lange’s exacting standards.
The opportunity to own a Lange timepiece is both an honour and privilege and certainly not an everyday occurrence. To learn more about these exceptional new timepieces and to inquire about the possibility of a private viewing, please contact the A. Lange & Söhne boutique in Sydney today.