Montblanc is, first and foremost, a luxury producer of pens. But to dismiss the brand as simply one and not consider it as a serious competitor in producing luxury watches are both easy and ignorant. In recent memory, we have seen the company committing to improving in this respect, manufacturing timepieces that would earn the same status as their writing materials in complexity and exclusivity. With the Minerva Manufacture right under its wing, it has launched watches that are collection-worthy, running with classic movements from the historic Swiss watch manufacture, not to mention beautiful.
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Release date: 2016
Together, Montblanc and Minerva have released spectacular watches for the more than a decade. Marking its 10-year run and Montblanc’s 100th anniversary, the collaboration has seen the release of the 1858 Chronograph Tachymeter Limited Edition, impressing aficionados. Rather than a vintage watch that has been relaunched to appeal to fanatics that have a taste for antiques, Montblanc has introduced the 1858 Chronograph Tachymeter Limited Edition based on Minerva-created timepieces from the 1930s.
- Movement: Minerva Calibre MB M16.29
- Manual winding, mono-pusher chronograph
- Power reserve: ~50 hours
- Functions: Hours, minutes and small seconds, chronograph
- Case: 44mmx13.5mm
- Glass: sapphire crystal, front and back
- Water resistance: 30m
Although not really an antique, the 1858 Chronograph Tachymeter Limited Edition brings to mind chronographs of the glamorous past, particularly of the 1930s. Apart from the chosen shades, it boasts of Arabic numerals and cathedral hands, adding to the old-timey feel of the watch. The design is clean, ensuring readability, and is utterly beautiful. There’s more to the watch as flipping it over will reveal a transparent caseback, letting one into the Minerva Calibre MB M16.29’s secrets. This is where Montblanc’s impressive attention to detail prevails, even more so than the dial. Even the material of the caseback is considered, which might appear bronze but is actually scratch-resistant titanium that would not stain your wrist.
At 44mm, the watch might put off other people and lead to little effort in hiding the watch, although the size helps in the legibility of the detailed dial and the ease with which one can use its mono-pusher chronograph. The movement was originally made by Minerva for pocket watches, hence the size. The cathedral hands can cause slight difficulty when using the chronograph counters, too. Moreover, the watch’s features aren’t at par with most powerful watches—water resistance at 30m and power reserve at 50 hours are moderate by today’s standards.
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