Last year, Vacheron Constantin introduced a new collection called the FiftySix. The name comes from the fact that the collection was inspired by a vintage Vacheron reference from the mid-’50s. It’s the brand’s entry-level collection targeted at younger watch buyers or collectors who are new to the brand, and it features a wide range of stainless steel and precious metal models with various complications. For 2019, Vacheron is updating the FiftySix Complete Calendar and Self-Winding models with new blue dials.
Brand: Vacheron Constantin
Model: FiftySix Complete Calendar, FiftySix Self-Winding
Dimensions: 40mm diameter, 5.4mm thick for Complete Calendar, 9.6mm thick for Self-Winding
Water Resistance: 30m
Case Material: Stainless steel
Movement: Caliber 2460 QCL/1 (Complete Calendar), Caliber 1326 (Self-Winding)
Power Reserve: 40 hours (Complete Calendar), 48 hours (Self-Winding)
Strap/Bracelet: Dark blue alligator leather strap
Price & Availability: $22,800 (Complete Calendar), $11,600 (Self-Winding)
Offering new dial variants is an easy way for brands to attract buyers and blue has always been a very popular choice. To give some context, the FiftySix Complete Calendar only came with a gray (pink gold) or silver (stainless steel) dial, while the FiftySix Self-Winding was only available in a silver dial regardless of the case material. In fact, the entire FiftySix collection seems to be only available in silver or gray dials. In light of that, these new models add some much-needed pizzazz and color to the collection.
This is only a dial color exercise so nothing else about the watches have changed. Case dimensions, dial layout, and movement are all unchanged. Vacheron calls their shade of blue ‘petrol blue’ and from the press photos, they do look seem to have a dark, creamy hue. Coupled with the white gold hands and markers on the dial, the new updated FiftySix Complete Calendar and Self-Winding models have a more relaxed look and feel about them. I reckon that with a rubber strap, you could even say these new models are sporty.
Despite these being Vacheron’s entry-level models, they are still built to very high standards. The case is nicely finished with plenty of design flourishes—it isn’t just a simple round case—the markers and hands are all white gold, and the movement is nicely finished and comes with 22k gold rotors. They might be some of Vacheron’s more affordable models but Vacheron has ensured that enough has been done so that buyers don’t feel like they are missing out or settling.
As I said, these new models inject some much-needed color to the rather somber FiftySix collection. The aesthetics are very sensible and pleasing if a little unexciting. Overall, I can see them appealing to the kind of people who appreciate having something that is uncommon and a little quirky. The Vacheron Constantin FiftySix Complete Calendar in petrol blue is priced at $22,800, while the FiftySix Self-Winding in petrol blue is priced at $11,600. vacheron-constantin.com
Follow our pre-, post-, and live SIHH 2019 coverage here and on social media.