Editor’s note: Hot off the heels of their latest release with the Heritage Classic Chronograph 1946, we thought we’d take a look at another smash hit from Longines’ Heritage collection – the Longines Heritage 1945. Few watches unveiled in the last couple of years have nailed the vintage aesthetic quite like the 1945, and for good reason. Whether it be the brushed copper convex dial, blued steel handset or mid-tan nubuck leather strap, this watch just oozes antiquated charm. A few years ago, we went hands-on with the mid-century stunner, and these were our initial impressions.
One of the highlights on our Baselworld calendar is seeing what heritage re-release Longines has cooked up, and whoo boy, have they pulled out all the stops in 2017 or what. You’re looking at the Heritage 1945, an absolutely on point interpretation of a mid-century dress watch. Based on a 1945 design called the Calatrava by collectors, this watch does everything right. Funnily enough it’s the exact watch that Sunflowerman illustrated as part of the Watercolour Watch project back in 2015.
The 40mm steel case is simple, and not overly fussy, with a flat bezel just the right width and a slender-yet-functional crown. The mid-tan nubuck strap with single line of reinforcing stitching in contrasting thread walks a perfectly straight line between dress and casual.
The real star is the dial. For such a minimal layout, Longines has packed it full of sexy detail. First of all there’s the vintage velvet effect of the brushed copper-tone convex dial, then there’s the alternating steel-tone applied hours markers and printed mid-century Arabic numerals, all of which contrasts with the long, elegant leaf hands in blued steel. The small seconds subdial has a concentric circular finish, just to keep things interesting.
Oh, and the curved ”Automatic’ text is a lovely touch. Though, if I was being particularly critical I would like the seconds subdial a little lower down the dial. The 1945 original was powered by the manually wound 12.68Z, but on this remake Longines has made a concession to modernity with the inclusion of automatic L609.3.
One or two of these elements would make the Longines Heritage 1945 a compelling proposition, but all of them together make it a real winner. And the best thing, no date window.