Calling it right now: The worldtimer should be the official complication of 2020. With more webinars being viewed, more Skype, WhatsApp, and Zoom calls being held, and more podcasts being recorded across multiple timezones than ever before, there’s never been a better (or more practical) time to own a proper worldtimer than right now. And as if on cue, Montblanc has again updated its flagship worldtimer — the Star Legacy Orbis Terrarum — with a new case and an impressively rendered new dial while sticking to the price range that has made its previous two iterations an *ahem* international hit.
Introduced in 2014, the Orbis Terrarum saw a light dial revision in 2016 but has otherwise remained unchanged since, making the 2020 variant a pretty dramatic update that seeks to refine the watch from top to bottom. Starting with a new case, we’ve got a more intricate lug design, a new crown, and better finishing on the pusher at 8 o’clock, along with a new set of hands and hour markers finished with luminous material to improve the watch’s overall legibility. The dial center is where the biggest updates occur — the “transverse mercator” map projection remains, but the map itself and the web of meridian lines are now a raised relief, rather than just a crystal pad printing under which a blue day/night indicator rotates. The end result is a gorgeous and much more three-dimensional display than what we’ve seen from the Orbis Terrarum in the past and should be a welcome update for any worldtime watch fans.
Model: Star Legacy Orbis Terrarum
Water Resistance: 50 meters
Case Material: stainless steel
Movement: Montblanc MB 29.20: 4Hz automatic w/ Day/Night indicator & worldtime
Strap/Bracelet: crocodile leather
Price & Availability: $6,800
Inside, Montblanc is sticking with the same MB 29.20 automatic movement (which appears to be a heavily in-house modified GMT calibre) around which to build the Orbis Terrarum’s unique time display. A pusher at 8 o’clock enables the wearer to jump the hour hand forward in single-hour increments. It’s a neat little feature for a quick springtime daylight savings adjustment, or, if you’re traveling from west to east, otherwise a quick westward flight could amount to as many as 20 presses of the button to correct the time. Which is to say, most worldtime watches ultimately aren’t particularly great for travel if you’re not able to individually jump the hour hand forward and backward. Even still, they’re excellent for those who frequently collaborate or conduct business with other time zones around the world, and it’s here, where the Orbis Terrarum excels, as it is markedly more legible than before and really nicely finished.
Once again, the official pricing on the Montblanc Star Legacy Orbis Terrarum in stainless steel is $6,800, which is a marked increase over its predecessor, which managed to stay under $6,000. That price jumps to $20,800 for the rose gold variant. For more information, head over to montblanc.com.