It’s been a big year for Longines, the Swiss luxury watchmaker who celebrated 190 years in business in 2022. First came a new version of their runaway hit, the Longines Spirit, with the same aviation-inspired looks as the original and a new 37mm stainless steel case, followed quickly by the Longines Spirit Zulu Time, a classic GMT. Following its successful role as Official Timekeeper and Official Partner of this summer’s Commonwealth Games in Birmingham (an event marked with a special edition HydroConquest dive watch), it raised the bar yet again with the Ultra-Chron, a watch with an ultra-accurate high-frequency movement.
More recently, the brand celebrated its 190th year with the Master Collection 190th Anniversary, a limited-edition trio of classically-inspired dress watches in steel, yellow gold, and pink gold. As many covetable new launches as we’ve seen from Longines in 2022 thus far, the brand isn’t finished yet. This month, it’s back with the Longines Record — a new chronograph with a vintage-inspired dial and a very attractive price.
Unlike, say, the HydroConquest or Spirit collections, which have received a lot of deserved attention in recent years, Longines’ Record line has been comparatively quiet. Composed of classically-inspired watches with roman numeral dials and steel or two-tone steel and gold cases, the Record is made of the kind of handsome daily driver that forms the foundation of many a watch collection. The new Longines Record takes the line in a bold new direction, adding the collection’s first chronograph movement and a design that pays homage to early chronographs from the 1930s and 1940s.
The dial is matte black, with golden Arabic numerals to mark the even hours, slender overlaid indexes for the odd hours, and — in a nod to its vintage inspiration — no date window. That design choice (which will no doubt be applauded by fans of early chronographs) means more real estate for the seconds subdial at 3 o’clock and the 30-minute counter at 9. The new Record also features a tachometer scale positioned around the periphery of the dial for better visibility, and a 40mm stainless steel case. While the outside may be a tribute to decades gone by, the movement is a thoroughly modern automatic calibre, with a silicon balance spring for improved anti-magnetism and a 59-hour power reserve. Most impressively (and increasingly common at Longines) the movement is also chronometer-certified by COSC, ensuring maximum accuracy and resilience.
A choice of stainless steel bracelet or brown leather strap with ecru stitching elegantly completes the package, making the new Longines Record a versatile and stylish tribute to the early days of chronograph design. Priced at $3,800, it’s also a great value for a Swiss-made chronograph of this calibre. After a year of new Longines releases that are as stylish as they are reasonably-priced, however, that should come as no surprise.