Longines is at its best when it pays homage to its illustrious past. Take a look at its mid-century catalogue, look at the chronographs it made in the Thirties and Forties and it’s a different brand from the one we know today. Back then, the chronographs it made, especially featuring the legendary 13ZN movement, were as good as anything made in that era.
Longines has a Heritage line where it brings back updated versions of some of its past classics and very rarely do they miss the mark. The latest is revival of a dress watch made in 1945. Originally called the Longines Calatrava by collectors, this is a departure from the usually military-inspired timepieces that the brand introduces in the Heritage Line.
The Longines Heritage 1945 features a 40 mm polished stainless steel case which is 2 mm more than the original watch from 1945. The 2017 version also features an automatic movement as opposed the hand-cranked charm of the original Caliber 12.68Z movement. These are the two obvious updates to the 1945 timepiece.
The dial has a brushed coppery hue and features a silvery cabochons that alternate with Arabic numerals on the hour circle. These cabochons are stamped while the numerals are printed on the domed dial. The copper tones of the dial form a good contrast with the blue slim leaf-shaped hands. A seconds sub-dial with a baton-shaped hand sits just above 6 o’ clock.
The sub-dial does seem a tad bit small on the 40 mm dial, but that’s a minor quibble. In keeping with its mid-century look, the solid steel caseback has an engraving of the vintage Longines hour glass and wings logo. This watch is fitted with a sapphire crystal with multi-layered anti-reflective coating. There is a minimalism to this watch that is very pleasing to the eye.
The Heritage 1945 is paired with beige leather strap with a nubuck finish. It is powered by the brand’s Calibre L609.3, a self-winding automatic movement that is based on ETA’s 2895/2. It is a 4 Hz movement with a power reserve of 42 hours. The watch is expected to retail at $1,800.