Earlier this year A. Lange & Sohne announced a limited edition collection of (even more) decorated watches as homages of the 165th anniversary of their founder, Ferdinand Adolph (F.A.) Lange. In 1845 Mr. Lange moved from Dresden to the nearby small mountain town of Glashutte. As Lange likes to see it, history was then born!
The 165 Years - Homage to F.A. Lange Collection includes three watches. They are not new watches per se, but done with unique treatment. Each on a new gold color called "honey gold." More on that in a sec. The watches each have guilloche engraved dials, which is rare for the brand these days. First is the Tourbograph "Pour le Merite," then the Lange 1 Tourbillon, and finally the quite new 1815 Moonphase watch.
Honey gold is a new 'invention' by Lange. It is a novel gold alloy that has a honey color to it. The warm look of the gold is unparalleled. It has a light brass look to it. Plus, it resembles the patina that the German silver (not actually silver) gets on its surface, a few years after the movements have been made. I know the concept of a new shade of gold is a bit silly. We already have all sorts of niche alloys in addition to the main ones like white, pink, or red gold. Still... honey gold is pretty nice, plus it is proprietary to A. Lange & Sohne for the time being (they aren't giving out the specific formula to anyone).
The first of the models is the Tourbograph "Pour le Merite" watch. Another addition to the "Pour Le Merite" collection. Actually, Lange has already offered a Tourbograph Pour le Merite watch, so I guess this would be the A. Lange & Sohne 165 Years - Homage to F.A. Lange Collection Tourbograph "Pour le Merite" limited edition watch. Darn that is a long name. Aside from the 41.2mm wide honey gold case and applied guilloche engraving on the solid gold dial, I believe this watch is otherwise similar to the other Tourbograph Pour le Merite watch. It has a Lange made L903.0 manually wound tourbillon movement with a 60 minute chronograph. A lovely Lange if there was any, and limited to just 50 pieces.
Next is F.A. Lange Homage version of the Lange 1 Tourbillon. Again, this is an existing model with a new treatment. Case is 38.5mm wide in honey gold, and the solid gold dial has guilloche engraving applied to it. A bit hard to tell here, but it is applied in the center of the watch face part of the dial. Gives the Lange 1 Tourbillon a real classy look. Inside the watch is an in-house manufactured L961.2 manually wound tourbillon movement. The asymmetrical dial has the time with a small subsidiary seconds dial, big ("out-size") date, and power reserve indicator. Really stunning with the exposed tourbillon mechanism. Doesn't that honey gold look good with the brown alligator strap? The Lange 1 Tourbillon for this collection will be limited to just 150 pieces.
Last is my favorite watch in the 165 Years - Homage to F.A. Lange Collection. It is an 1815 Moonphase watch in (of course) honey gold with a beautiful guilloche engraved dial. The Symmetry and balance on this watch are outstanding given the features and items on the dial - truly a magnificent piece. It is no secret that I love A. Lange & Sohne timepieces, but some of them hit me in an emotional way more than others. This is one of them. At 37.4mm wide, the watch case could be a hair bigger for my tastes, though it does wear nicely. Inside the 1815 Moonphase is Lange L943.2 manually would movement that features a moonphase indicator, time on the main dial, and subsidiary seconds hand. Again, the dial is in solid gold, with blued steel hands. This one is limited to 265 pieces.
As a nice reminder of these above three watch lines, the 165 Years - Homage to F.A. Lange Collection watches are going to be a collectors favorite. Use of the decoration on the dial matched with the new type of gold tone is a nice play on the limited edition. They should be out now, priced... high.