In addition to this year’s blue novelties, Montblanc is also presenting two new 1858 models inspired by Minerva’s heritage. These new timepieces feature vintage aesthetics with new colored dials, case elements made of a special alloy of bronze, hand-made NATO straps, and unique complications. Directly rooted in the Spirit of Mountain Exploration, the Montblanc 1858 timepieces combine the back to nature trend with vintage design codes that are reminiscent of the original Minerva chronographs and pocket watches from the 1920s and 1930s.
For better legibility and design, the dials highlight striking colour contrasts with their historical, luminescent, cathedral-shaped hands with a “cloisonné” design; Arabic numerals coated with SuperLumiNova®; railway minute tracks; and the original Montblanc logo from the 1930s with its historical font and emblem of the Mont Blanc Mountain. The satin-finished cases feature horn edges that are polished to underline their shape. Other details include fluted crowns, typical of those found on period timepieces, and domed sapphire crystal glass boxes.
The two new timepieces are equipped with NATO straps that are handcrafted in France at a traditional, 150-year-old weaving manufacture. Thanks to this artisanal know-how, the NATO straps are refined, robust, durable and extremely comfortable on the wrist. This year, a new beige colour will complete the product line, providing even more vintage options.
Montblanc 1858 Automatic 24H
In the Spirit of Mountain Exploration, the 1858 Automatic 24H features a new complication with a 24H indication via a single hand that allows the timepiece to be used both as a timekeeper, to read hours and minutes, and as a compass.
The timepiece indicates the time on a 24-hour scale using a red-coloured hand coated in SuperLumiNova® for better readability both day and night. This red-tipped hand not only indicates the time but also acts as a compass. For precision purposes, the compass scale is displayed in a beige-coloured ring that runs around the outside of the dial, with markers for approximately every 5°, and includes the cardinal points in red.
How Does It Work?
The Earth rotates around the Sun every 24 hours, which explains why a timepiece with a 24-hour display is a far more useful tool for finding your way and makes the compass much easier to use. The sun always rises in the East and sets in the West and will indicate South at midday. If you are in the Northern Hemisphere, set your watch at the right time, simply hold the watch horizontally to the ground and rotate it until the extremity of the hour hand is pointing towards the sun. Like this, all the cardinal points on the dial will be correctly aligned. North is located at 24h and South at 12h. If you are in the Southern Hemisphere, you have to consider that the cardinal points are inversed.
Special attention has been paid to the black dial with its map of the Northern Hemisphere and 24 meridians made out of luminescent material. The SuperLumiNova-coated elements are subtly visible during the day, while at night, the 24-hour numerals, indexes and single hour hand take on a mysterious glow, making the timepiece truly distinctive.
The automatic timepiece comes with a new 42 mm bicolour case made of stainless steel and a bezel made of a special alloy of bronze, providing a vintage aesthetic. The timepiece is completed with a special “Spirit of Mountain Exploration” engraving on the case back. The 1858 Automatic 24H is equipped with a matching black, hand-crafted NATO strap that is made in a traditional 150-year-old strap manufacture in France.
The Montblanc 1858 Monopusher Chronograph is one of the technical pillars of the Maison. In this new version, Montblanc reinterprets a historical Minerva chronograph with its calibre 13.20 from the 1930s. Like on the original timepiece, the 1858 Monopusher Chronograph features a black dial with a beige-coloured railway track, as well as two counters at three and nine o’clock. Matching the overall vintage design, other details include a telemeter scale; beige-coloured SuperLumiNova® numerals; and rose gold-coated, cathedral-shaped hands that are also highlighted with a touch of beige-coloured SuperLumiNova® for better visibility at night.
In the Spirit of Mountain Exploration, the timepieces come in a 42 mm case made of a special alloy of bronze that evolves over time and forms a patina. The timepiece is completed with a special “Spirit of Mountain Exploration” engraving on the case back.
The 1858 Monopusher Chronograph Limited Edition features the calibre MB. 25.12 that indicates elapsed time with a central second hand and a 30-minute counter, both with white-coloured hands to create a contrast with the black dial and allow better readability of the function. The start, stop and reset can be activated through a single pusher integrated into the crown. The timepiece is available with a new matching beige-coloured NATO strap that is made in a traditional 150-year-old strap manufacture in France.
Two other unlimited models are available in stainless steel, one of which comes with a new stainless steel bracelet made of a mix of link shapes – central polished links in the form of grains of rice and satin-finished rectangular links on the outside – and the other which comes with an aged, cognac-coloured calfskin strap.