This just released beauty is one of just 218 – the Richard Lange Pour le Mérite edition from A.Lange & Sohne, a watch that revives the concept of the uncompromisingly precise timekeeping instrument.
The new manual-wind timepiece is presented in white gold with a black dial and had its debut at the company’s just concluded international dealer convention in Dresden.
The watch owes its accuracy to a fusée-and-chain transmission arrangement that ensures constant torque and what the brand describes as “superb rate accuracy.”
Inspired by historic pocket watches, this mechanism guarantees constant torque and thus stability of the amplitude of the balance across the entire power-reserve range. Wrapped around the mainspring barrel, the 636-part chain – which is only 0.25 millimetres thick and 156 millimeters long – delivers the power of the mainspring to the wheel train via the cone-shaped fusée. This keeps the torque constant.
When the watch is fully wound, the chain pulls at the smaller circumference of the fusée. Conversely, when the tension of the mainspring is nearly depleted, the chain pulls at the larger circumference of the fusee. In principle, the mechanism works like the gearing of a bicycle except that the gear ratios are infinitely variable rather than fixed.
Then of course there’s the design and appearance of the watch, with its finishing and unmistakable Lange DNA, promising refined looks destined to never date. That white gold case could be steel and spans a happy 40.5mm; previous versions – there have been four, long sold out – were cased in pink gold and platinum.
One touch of colour is red numerals for the 15, 30, 45 and 60 minute markings.
It’s the kind of timepiece that has enthusiasts firmly on side and ranking A. Lange at the pinnacle, mentioned alongside the likes of Patek Philippe. As for pricing, expect to pay in the AUD$120,000-plus region.
How we rate the Richard Lange Pour le Mérite? In a word, highly. This is one of those watches you’d never tire of, a stand-out in any collection.
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