Without a doubt the new A. Lange & Söhne is one of our favorite watches released this year at the SIHH 2017, as it opens a new entry level price point for the brand offering one of the most useful complications out there. With a dial layout similar to that of a Perpetual Calendar, the new A. Lange & Söhne 1815 Annual Calendar could fool anyone from afar. With a generous 40 mm case in either 18K white gold or 18K pink gold and a manual wound movement, the new 1815 Annual Calendar features date, day, month and moon phase indicator. The 1815 Annual Calendar is the second A. Lange & Söhne timepiece endowed with the eponymous calendar function. But in contrast to the automatic Saxonia Annual Calendar with an outsize date presented in 2010, the new model features a manually wound movement and an analogue date, following the classic design and style principles of the 1815 watch family.
Fitted with a silver dial for both references, this classic background serves as the scenery where blued-steel hands indicate the time and contrast-rich black Arabic numerals and the peripheral railway track minute scale intertwine. Calculated to remain accurate for 122.6 years, the moon phase display is integrated into the subsidiary seconds dial at 6 o’clock. The calendar indications are easily legible thanks to the golden hands of the two subdials that are precisely aligned with the horizontal center axis. With a classic and very well balanced layout, the dial features Day and Date subdial at 9 o'clock, month at 3 o'clock and moon phase at 6.
It's 40 mm case diameter with a slender profile only 10.1 mm thick, make this new Lange simply perfect for most wrists, especially for those of us that can't go smaller than 40 mm and well suited to hide under most cuffs. Additionally, with the user in mind, a pusher at 2 o’clock makes it possible to collectively advance all indications without having to adjust the date, day or month independently. Additionally, three recessed correctors around the caseband allow separate corrections of the day, date, month and moon phase. It is relevant to point out that for the first time in a Lange calendar model, the date can also be separately advanced with an additional recessed corrector.
Powered by the new manual wound calibre L051.3 with a power reserve of 3 days —72 hours— the calendar module on this movement is only 1.4 mm high making for a very slender movement. Despite its compactness, the one detail that is instantly noticeable while admiring the movement, is that the ratchet and crown wheels are visibly integrated into the German-silver three-quarter plate and decorated with solarization. Screwed gold chatons, the screw balance, the whiplash spring and the hand-engraved balance cock harmoniously round out a movement finished to the ambitious standards of traditional Saxon watchmaking artistry. The new in-house calibre 1051.3 is composed of 345 parts and 26 jewels and beats at a frequency of 21,600 vph —3 Hz.
On the Wrist & Pricing
On the wrist, the new A. Lange & Söhne 1815 Annual Calendar wears true to its size and impeccably. While the 18K white gold ref. 238.026 is delivered with a black hand-stitched alligator strap with matching 18K white gold pin buckle, the 18K pink gold ref. 238.032 is delivered on a red brown one. Both watches are priced equally and one is as appealing as the other. In our case, we like how discreet white gold can be, therefore, that's our pick on this one. A beautiful execution of one of the most noble and functional complications out there and a Lange timepiece packed with a lot of punch for the money —especially if you take into consideration that this watch is cheaper than the Lange 1 Moon Phase.
Sticker Price €37,500 Euros —approximately $39,500 USD. For more info on A. Lange & Söhne click here.