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The best new watches 2015
IWC Portugieser Hand-Wound Eight Days Edition 75th Anniversary
IWC played family fortunes this year with its crowd favourite Portugieser, the watch formerly known as Portuguese. Eight new models made their way into the fold, including this 75th anniversary piece, which is the spit of the 1940 original. Under that ageless vintage dial is a hand-wound movement with an eight-day power reserve. Shame of it is only 750 (in stainless steel) will be made.
Panerai Luminor Submersible 1950 Chrono Flyback Automatic Titanio 47mm PAM00615
Whenever Panerai launches a new watch, its not always immediately obvious what its done to make it different to what went before. After a bit of spot the difference, we can tell you this Luminor Submersible divers watch has a matt black ceramic bezel insert, and chronograph push pieces on the left, where they can be operated by a right-handers thumb. Minor changes, yes, but so what its cool.
Cartier Clé de Cartier
Cartier watch designs have a habit of developing iconic status (Tank, Crash etc), so its headline news when a new one comes along. The Clé de Cartier has a tapered case thats got a retro, dandyish feel to it, and a crown styled like the key of an old-fashioned wind-up clock hence clé, French for key. The 40mm white gold version has style maven written all over it.
£14,200 (white gold on leather strap)
Vacheron Constantin Harmony Chronograph
One of the watches everyone was talking about at SIHH was Vacherons all-new Harmony, its 260th anniversary collection. Seven models were launched, all viciously limited, including this pink gold monopusher chronograph (just the 260 of these to come). Inside its cushion-shaped case is the brands fresh-out-of-the-box chronograph movement, long awaited by aficionados.
Montblanc Heritage Chronométrie Dual Time
Montblanc is edging towards a time when its known for its watches as much as its pens, chivvied along by pieces such as this Heritage Chronométrie Dual Time, which could prove to be the shows sleeper hit. It contains one of Montblancs new in-house developed calibres, which can be adjusted in one-hour jumps via the crown. A watch for well-heeled time-zone jumpers thats also not too beastly on the wallet.
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Diver
The Royal Oak Offshore Diver first appeared in 2010 and became an instant man-favourite, probably because putting it on is like pumping testosterone directly into your forearm. There are two new models this year, one with a black dial and one with a silvered finish. Both have stainless steel cases water-resistant to 300 metres, inner rotating bezels for measuring dive times and automatic movements with 60-hour power reserves.
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra-Slim
Somewhere in among the legion astral-themed high complications launched by Jaeger-LeCoultre this year was this real-world-ready slim-line beauty. Theres little more to say about it other than its a stainless steel-cased, time and date automatic with a silvered dial on a black alligator strap. Sometimes thats all a watch needs. Perfection.
Baume et Mercier Clifton Big Date Power Reserve
The presence of affordable luxury champion Baume et Mercier at SIHH brings welcome relief from the rarefied climes of its fellow Richemont Group brands, and also means we get reasonably priced watches such as this debonair Clifton. The big date and power reserve indications are well balanced on the dial, and add a duo of useful complications to the range without blowing the doors off the budget.
Piaget Altiplano Chronograph
Piagets nil-by-mouth approach to watchmaking continues to throw up some of the worlds skinniest timepieces it currently holds 14 watchmaking records for thinness. Two of those belong to its latest pink gold chronograph, which is the worlds thinnest hand-wound flyback chronograph watch and houses the thinnest movement of its kind. Forgetting that, its also a minimalist design triumph.
A. Lange & Söhne Datograph Up/Down
Langes small but perfectly formed collection already included a Datograph Up/Down, but not one in pink gold with a black dial. Its got a flyback chronograph, an outsize date and a 60-hour power reserve shown on the up/down indicator at 6 oclock, and was dubbed by a number of critics at SIHH as the one to make off with.
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