Watches and Wonders 2023: A. Lange & Söhne
A. Lange & Söhne houses its first self-winding chronograph calibre in the Odysseus collection.
The above sums up all there is to know about this excellent watch. The Odysseus is A. Lange & Söhne’s first serially produced watch in a non-precious material. First introduced in 2019 and reputedly named personally by the chairperson of the Richemont Group, Johann Rupert, it sent shockwaves through the Lange community as an integrated bracelet, sports-luxe timepiece. The first Odysseus watch was made of steel, followed by a white gold and titanium model.
The inaugural Odysseus featured an L155.1 Datomatic calibre, a self-winding day-date watch with an easy date corrector using the crown guard-style pushers integrated into the watch’s case design. This year, the Odysseus gets a new sibling with a chronograph complication. The Odysseus Chronograph retains the key elements of the original with a new development that is quite brilliant.
The Odysseus Chronograph
The distinguishing features of the Odysseus are a well-balanced dial with an outer minute track, a snailed hour indicator ring, and a beadblasted centre. A small seconds counter with the same design is placed at 6 o’clock, and oversized day and large date displays are at 9 and 3 o’clock, respectively. The watch has a slimmed-down bezel that’s mirror-polished, contrasting against the flat, brushed surfaces of the case and bracelet.
The Odysseus Chronograph maintains almost the same design as the three-hand model, including the small seconds counter. The chronograph indicators are instead represented on the main black dial, with lozenge-tipped chronograph seconds hand in red and a silver-coloured 60-minute totaliser hand.
Anthony de Haas, director of product development for the brand, says, “The Odysseus Chronograph transports the contemporary and one-of-a-kind design of the watch family to a new technical dimension. It meets all the requirements of a stopwatch suitable for many fields of application without relinquishing the hallmarks of Lange precision watchmaking.”
The adjustment of the chronograph minutes hand led the brand to develop a new reset-to-zero function. If the reset pusher is pressed when the chronograph minutes hand ran for less than 30 minutes, it returns via a flyback design. But if it’s beyond the halfway point, it advances instead. The rule of the shortest distance to the start point applies here.
The chronograph function uses the same pushers as the day/date adjustors, which remain on the watch. When the crown is screwed in, the chronograph can be activated. When it’s pulled out, the day and date displays can be adjusted. This gearbox-style functioning ensures movement security and minimises damage. The L156.1 Datomatic calibre has a platinum rotor and a maximum power reserve of 50 hours.
The Odysseus Chronograph is limited to just 100 pieces and will be available later in the year; pre-orders are already being accepted.
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