Vacheron Constantin (VC) has launched several new models at Watches & Wonders (W&W) 2023 held at Geneva, Switzerland.
Watches & Wonders 2023: new from Vacheron Constantin
- Overseas Moonphase Retrograde Date.
- Overseas Self-Winding (four-versions).
- Patrimony Retrograde Day-Date.
- Traditionnelle Tourbillon Retrograde Date Openface.
- Les Cabinotiers Dual Moon Grand Complication.
Overseas Moonphase Retrograde Date
VC continues to enhance its stellar Overseas collection. The highlight for W&W 2023 is the Overseas Moonphase Retrograde Date. VC has combined the case of the Overseas with the calibre 2460 R31L/2 (originally developed for the Patrimony Moon Phase Retrograde Date as calibre 2460 R31L/1), to give birth to its first ever sports watch with VC’s signature retrograde display. It embodies the Overseas spirit of travel with the most romantic of visual complications – a moonphase. With its translucent lacquered blue dial and stainless-steel case, a case diameter of 41 mm and case thickness of 10.48 mm, along with the Overseas strap change system (Stainless Steel bracelet, Calfskin (Bleu Fonce) strap, and Rubber (Bleu Fonce) are included); the Overseas Moonphase Retrograde Date is the perfect timepiece for a collector who wants the sportiness and versatility of the Overseas, but one with a retrograde date and a moonphase.
This timepiece is powered by inhouse calibre 2460 R31L/2. In addition to the retrograde date display, it has a precision moon-phase display which requires a 1-day correction every 122 years. The calibre is visible through a sapphire case back, and the 22K gold rotor is adorned with the design of a compass rose, conveying themes of travel and exploration. It beats at a frequency of 28800 V.P.H. and has a power reserve of 40 hours. Both the calibre and the timepiece are hallmarked with the Geneva Seal.
The Overseas Moonphase Retrograde Date is a fantastic addition to the Overseas collection. Among the several reasons to own this magnificent timepiece, the opportunity to witness the retrograde jump from 31 to 1 in 1/10th of a second is one of them. This timepiece is a future classic. One which likely will be introduced in other dial colours and precious metal cases in the future.
VC has introduced four downsized self-winding models which display the time, date and centre-seconds. They include the following:
- Stainless Steel with Blue Dial – case diameter of 34.5 mm and case thickness of 9.33 mm.
- Pink Gold with Blue Dial – case diameter of 34.5 mm and case thickness of 9.33 mm.
- Stainless Steel / Gem set with Pink Lacquered Dial – case diameter of 35 mm and case thickness of 9.33 mm.
- Pink Gold / Gem set with Blue Dial – case diameter of 35 mm and case thickness of 9.33 mm.
All four-versions are delivered with a bracelet (stainless steel or 18K 5N pink gold (polished satin finished) depending on corresponding model), calfskin strap (blue or beige depending on corresponding model) and rubber strap (blue or beige depending on corresponding model).
Self-winding calibre 1088/1, which drives the hours, minutes, centre-seconds, and date is chosen to power these four versions. It is equipped with a stop-second mechanism, which allows precise timekeeping adjustment. The calibre is visible through a sapphire case back, and the 22K gold rotor is adorned with the design of a compass rose, conveying themes of travel and exploration. It beats at a frequency of 28800 V.P.H. and has a power reserve of 40 hours.
In recent years, the Overseas family of timepieces has become increasingly popular. The Overseas Self-Winding (reference 4500V) – especially in stainless steel with Blue Dial – has become one of the most sought-after timepieces in the world, with its demand far exceeding what VC is currently capable of producing. Also, the 4500V’s case diameter of 41 mm and case thickness of 11 mm is not perfectly suited to many wrists – whether men or women. Given this scenario, introducing this downsized version of VC’s iconic sports timepiece – in four-versions – was much needed. It will allow men and women collectors the world over to own an iconic Overseas timepiece whose case dimensions are more classical and better suited to their wrists, and (hopefully) easier to obtain.
Patrimony Retrograde Day-Date
In VC’s own words from its website, “Circular perfection, a quest for essentials; the Patrimony collection is the epitome of stylistic pureness. Reflecting a deliberately minimalist approach striking a beautiful balance between taut lines and curves, it asserts its personality through slender cases radiating an elegance inspired by 1950s Vacheron Constantin models.” The Patrimony collection is among the most beautiful family of circular dress timepieces in the world. It could also be considered VC’s ‘Flagship’ collection. The Patrimony Retrograde Day-Date is one of the oldest models in VC’s current catalogue. It is a classical wristwatch with two of VC’s signature retrograde display; the date placed on the upper part of the dial, and the days of the week on the lower part. For W&W 2023, VC has launched this model in a 950 Platinum case with a Salmon-coloured dial with a sunburst pattern. VC only combines salmon-coloured dials with platinum cases. It has a case diameter of 42.5 mm and case thickness of 9.7 mm. Other notable details include the hour and minute hands and hour-markers crafted in 18K white gold, and the retrograde day and date hands crafted in blued-steel.
This timepiece is powered by inhouse calibre 2460 R31R7/3. It is visible through a sapphire case back, including its 22K gold openworked rotor which is adorned with the Maltese Cross emblem. It beats at a frequency of 28800 V.P.H. and has a power reserve of 40 hours. Both the calibre and the timepiece are hallmarked with the Geneva Seal. This timepiece is delivered with two straps: one in calfskin (blue) and one in alligator leather (blue).
The combination of a 950-platinum case and salmon-coloured dial makes a gorgeous timepiece even more stunning. The Patrimony Retrograde Day-Date is all about discreet elegance and class. It speaks volumes about its owner and is a timepiece that ‘whispers’ and does not ‘shout’. As an added treat, the owner of this timepiece has the privilege of witnessing the retrograde jump from 31 to 1, and Sunday to Monday, both in 1/10th of a second. This is VC at its sublime best.
Traditionnelle Tourbillon Retrograde Date Openface
VC’s Traditionnelle family’s design codes allow them to experiment a great deal with complications, grand complications, and aesthetics. And this is what they have achieved with the Traditionnelle Tourbillon Retrograde Date Openface. Its pink gold case with a case diameter of 41 mm and case thickness of 11.07 mm, along with its openface dial (18K 3N pink gold) with a slate grey shade and NAC surface treatment, as well as hand-guilloche (lower part of the dial), and the signature Traditionnelle dauphine hands, allows part of calibre 2162 R31 to be visible on the dial side. The openface dial provides immense visual depth, giving this timepiece a modern and futuristic appearance.
This timepiece is powered by the inhouse self-winding calibre 2162 R31, which drives the hours, minutes, tourbillon, small seconds on tourbillon cage, and VC’s signature retrograde date function. With its NAC slate grey finish, this calibre is visible through a sapphire case back, where its peripheral gold rotor allows one to view the gorgeous movement finishing for which VC is renown. It beats at a frequency of 18000 V.P.H. and has a power reserve of 72 hours. Both the calibre and the timepiece are hallmarked with the Geneva Seal.
As a member of the Holy Trinity (Audemars Piguet and Patek Philippe the other two maisons), VC has decades of heritage and know-how in crafting grand complications, and this timepiece continues this legacy. It combines one of VC’s signature grand complications – the tourbillon, and a signature complication – the retrograde date, and combines them with an openface dial. (This is not an openworked dial, which is another watchmaking artform and also where VC’s abilities are second to none.) Previously, VC has done similar openface dials for their Traditionnelle Twin Beat Perpetual Calendar and Traditionnelle Complete Calendar Openface. The openface dial represents how the most historic, venerable, and most classical of watchmakers can take bold steps and innovate, while remaining true to its classical roots. The owner of this timepiece will both be able to witness the retrograde jump from 31 to 1 in 1/10th of a second, and also be mesmerised by the rotation of the meticulously finished tourbillon. It is likely that this model will be launched with a classical closed dial in the future.
Les Cabinotiers Dual Moon Grand Complication
VC’s Les Cabinotiers department is tasked with special order timepieces; either specified by a customer or by VC themselves. They produce timepieces which are simply unimaginable. Once imagined, Les Cabinotiers makes them come to life. And the Les Cabinotiers Dual Moon Grand Complication is one such of their magnificent creations.
This one-of-a-kind timepiece has 11 complications.
The front side displays:
- Hours and Minutes of mean solar time.
- Gregorian Perpetual Calendar displayed by a retrograde date, day of the week, month, and leap year.
- Precision Moon-phase displaying the age of the moon in both the Northern and Southern Hemisphere.
- Minute Repeater, activated by a slide on the left of the case.
The back side displays:
- Tourbillon regulator.
- Sky chart.
- Sidereal hour display.
Newly developed in-house hand-wound calibre 2755 TMRCCQP, comprising of 774 components, beats at 18000 V.P.H., with a power reserve of 58-hours, powers this phenomenal timepiece. While the calibre is not visible since this is a two-sided display timepiece, it is nevertheless finished to the highest standards in haute horology. Both the calibre and the timepiece are hallmarked with the Geneva Seal. Given the complexity of this calibre, the 18K white gold case’s dimensions are quite manageable with a diameter of 46 mm and case thickness of 17.10 mm.
It seems like all of VC’s expertise and know-how, honed over its 267 years of existence, is poured into this timepiece. We should just be grateful that this timepiece exists. Horology is all the better for it.