A First From Longines —
— Longines may be renowned for its elegant dress watches in the Record Collection, the hyper-accuracy of its Conquest V.H.P. line-up, and its dive watch styling, both vintage and modern, in the Legend Diver and Hydroconquest series, but one of its most recognized attributes is the brand’s ability to produce good-looking timepieces with practical complications for accessible prices. is year, the Saintimier-based marque introduced an Annual Calendar within its Master Collection that checks off all those boxes and more. Since the Master Collection made its debut in 2005, it could be considered the flagship of contemporary Longines. In the past, this has been the home for a variety of models including classically designed chronographs, retrograde styles, perpetual calendars and moon-phase watches but this is the first time an annual calendar has been added to the mix; in fact, this is the first time Longines has ever introduced an annual calendar in its 186-year-old history. Featuring a 40-mm stainless-steel case, the watch is identifiable thanks to its dial with a stamped barleycorn motif and the date and month at 3 o’clock.
There are four different versions available: two with a silver-finished dial and either Arabic numerals or diamond indexes, one with a black dial and Roman numerals and a single model with a sunray blue dial. The hands are either made from blued steel or are rhodium plated. Inside the watch is Caliber L897.2 (base ETA A31.L81) that is viewable through the exhibition caseback and has a 64-hour power reserve. It comes on either a stainless-steel bracelet or a black, brown or blue alligator leather strap with a triple-safety folding clasp. This being an annual calendar, the complication will intuitively display the correct date and month of any month with 30 or 31 days (February requires manual adjustment). While this kind of update is somewhat par for the course for Longines, as there might not be another Swiss watch brand currently offering a higher degree of quality to value, it’s still a remarkable achievement and a noteworthy addition to one of the brand’s broader collections. The Longines Master Collection Annual Calendar is priced at $2,425 and might just be the most affordable annual calendar on the market today.