A. Lange & Söhne is introducing two new versions of the award-winning mechanical digital watch in platinum and pink gold. Thanks to the evolved calibre L043.6, the exceptional timepiece now has a power reserve doubled to 72 hours and offers even greater convenience. The revolutionary design concept has been subtly reworked as well, enhancing its expressive style. Even though the minute-by-minute progression of the large jumping numerals may seem to be moved by magic, it is precisely controlled by a reliable calibre with seven patents.
The Zeitwerk has a patented mechanism with three jumping numeral discs that make a glance at the watch a special experience. The hours and minutes are displayed from left to right by large-format numerals that are 2.9 millimetres high and 2.3 millimetres wide. The harmonious arrangement on the curved time bridge and the size of the displays ensure superb legibility.
Additionally, this aesthetically original and technically elaborate display endows the dial with vibrancy and verve because the underlying mechanism switches the three numeral discs—one displays the hours, the other two display the units and the tens digits of the minutes—within fractions of a second. The most exciting event happens at the top of the hour when all three numeral discs are simultaneously advanced by one increment. With this precise choreography, the moment becomes the event.
To create this lucid and innovative display, Lange’s designers questioned the conventional principles and rules of precision watchmaking afresh. This was necessary because the challenge of fitting the mechanism in the limited dimensions of a wristwatch and at the same time providing enough energy to produce the synchronised switching steps was enormous.
Also, the incremental step must be executed precisely after 60 seconds. This challenging operation is handled by the patented constant-force escapement. As a multitalented device, it even makes a further contribution: It assures that the movement is also powered by a uniform amount of force; this benefits rate stability. While these challenges were already intelligently mastered by the first-generation Zeitwerk, the new generation goes a step further with the refined calibre L043.6.
Another improvement versus the predecessor model is the simplified setting of the hour. The integration of a pusher for correcting the hour indication, first introduced in the Zeitwerk DATE, required considerable constructional effort. To enable the correction independently of the switching cycles of the time indication, a patented vertical clutch uncouples the hour ring from the jumping numerals mechanism each time the pusher is pressed. The setting of the minute indication in both directions is still performed with the crown at two o’clock.
In its second generation, the Zeitwerk also features an oscillation system with its own balance spring and patented beat-adjustment system. With a glance through the sapphire-crystal caseback, connoisseurs can admire the hand-engraved balance and escape-wheel cocks, the solarised winding wheels, the 59 jewels, and the intricate, straight-grained remontoir bridge that accommodates two recessed, screwed gold chatons.
The most prominent element is the time bridge made of German silver. The material, traditionally used by A. Lange & Söhne for frame parts such as bridges and cocks, makes it clear that it is an integral component of the movement. In the new Zeitwerk, it was subtly reworked to make more room for the subsidiary seconds dial at six o’clock.
The platinum edition has a rhodié dial made of solid silver and the time bridge is black rhodiumed. Colour-matched hands round out the harmonious design with the black alligator leather strap on the pinkgold model while the platinum version is paired with a darkbrown alligator leather strap.
The new Zeitwerk is available now via A. Lange & Söhne retailers, priced $101,000 USD and $112,000 USD respectively.