The Vacheron Constantin Overseas Chronograph has the best blue in the business The Vacheron Constantin Overseas Chronograph has the best blue in the business

The Vacheron Constantin Overseas Chronograph has the best blue in the business

Borna Bošnjak

The integrated bracelet chronograph is a curious proposition, especially when it comes to the luxury segment. They’re not quite the first thing people gravitate towards when it comes to one of the Holy Trinity classics, and that’s exactly why they could be a good indicator as to how deep down the rabbit hole the wearer may be. Vacheron Constantin and the Overseas have long played the underdog, and it took insane levels of scarcity and secondary market shenanigans for people to realise the Overseas, and by extension, the Overseas Chronograph, are just as worthy of attention. The flagship of the third generation of this sub-collection is undoubtedly the combination of a really good blue and pink gold case. You’ve read the title though, and I clearly say that this isn’t just a good blue. It’s the best.

The dial

vacheron constantin overseas chronograph pink gold blue dial close up

So, let’s start with that bold claim, and before I make any actual valid arguments, I’ve got to start with an excuse. No matter the camera, lens nor quality of studio setup, this dial is pretty much impossible to capture in its full glory. The lacquering process produces a finish that is at the same time transparent and mirrored, providing an abyss blue backdrop to the floating indices and printing. My favourite bit has to be the thin, light blue pinstripe that surrounds each azuraged sub-dial, serving as a highlighting tone to the darkening gradient of the blue.

vacheron constantin overseas chronograph pink gold blue dial wrist close up

The pink gold handset is a great addition of warm tones and helps with the legibility, which may be marred slightly by the reflective nature of all the dial elements. Having said that, one glance at this beauty, and you won’t care what time it is. Unless you do, of course – maybe that’s just a me thing? What you might care about is the positioning of the date at the controversial 04:30 position. Certain watches don’t really suffer from this choice – the silver variant of this watch in fact actually manages it reasonably well. You’ll notice, however, I didn’t say this watch has the best blue dial, merely best uses the colour, and the mismatched date is the very reason for that in my view.

The case

vacheron constantin overseas chronograph pink gold blue dial wrist

For all the subtlety Vacheron may be going for in their other collections, the Overseas is certainly not that. The time-only 41mm model is already known to wear quite large for its size, and the Chronograph expands on that both in actual size and perceived presence. The Maltese cross-inspired case grows to 42.5mm in diameter, though manages to stay relatively thin for an automatic chronograph, measuring in at 12.67mm. Considering the 150 metres of water resistance, those are excellent dimensions for those with larger wrists, or those simply looking for a large, versatile wearer.

vacheron constantin overseas chronograph pink gold blue dial case profile close up

The 18k 5N pink gold is given a royal treatment, with perfect polishing on the case flanks, facets, and sloped portions of the bezel, while the top of the case and bracelet links are vertically brushed. To distinguish the two matte elements of the case and first bezel step, Vacheron separate them with a razor-thin polished section and brush the bezel circularly. The crown screws down, and the pushers are secured with a quarter turn to ensure they’re not actuated by accident. Finally, Vacheron have added a soft iron case ring to help with anti-magnetic protection, bumping it up to 25,000 A/m, or approximately 300 Gauss.

The bracelet and strap

vacheron constantin overseas chronograph pink gold blue dial bracelet clasp

That fine brushed pattern I mentioned earlier continues all the way to the butterfly clasp of the 18k 5N gold bracelet that’s composed of semi-Maltese cross links. There are bevels at the top of each link accentuating the design, with a polished shoulder running the length of the assembly.

vacheron constantin overseas chronograph pink gold blue dial rubber strap

Should this be too blingy, you can easily change the strap for one of the two included options. One is a textured, grey-blue rubber that plays into the sportiness of the model, while the other flips the script to dressy with its stitched blue leather look. Both are mounted on pink gold pin buckles, but the real difference maker is the toolless strap exchange system. I cannot tell you how many times I’ve wanted to swap between straps on its predecessor, and the fiddliness of the whole process just discouraged me completely.

The movement

vacheron constantin overseas chronograph pink gold blue dial movement caseback

When the third-generation Overseas Chronograph released, a big selling point was the in-house Calibre 5200, a rarity among high-end chronographs. Nowadays, many brands have gone down the in-house route as it’s proven a recipe for success among collectors, but Vacheron were doing it before it was cool. Regardless of how you feel about the whole in-house debate, the 5200 makes a good case for itself, with stunning decoration and a rotor that I’m for once glad is the centrepiece of the movement. The striped bridges below are more like plates, covering much of the movement, so it’s not like it’s obscuring anything important, and the intricate combination of brushing, frosting and polishing of its 22k surface is quite spectacular. Spec-wise, it beats at 4Hz and has a 52-hour power reserve, and operates the chronograph via a column wheel that bears the Maltese cross, because of course it does. It’s not a world-beater just purely looking at the stats, but actually looking at it makes the Poinçon de Genève make sense.

The verdict

Surprisingly, the Vacheron Constantin Overseas Chronograph is kind of in a world of its own when it comes to competition, making it an easy recommendation should it hit all the targets you’re aiming for. The highlight here is undoubtedly that stunning dial, made all the more apparent by the brawny 42.5mm case that wears with all the presence you may expect. Yes, the 04:30 date window is a personal nitpick, but I do feel that the brand should’ve continued with the big date used in the second-generation Overseas Chrono. Not only would it be more aesthetically pleasing, but it would be another point of difference over the 41mm Royal Oak Chronograph that is this piece’s closest competitor. There are tangible benefits here, however. For starters, the Overseas comes standard with its excellent quick-exchange bracelet system allowing you to swap between the three included options easily – a feature I wish I had on my gen two. The appeal of the Overseas isn’t just purely objective, however. As much as it’s become a hyper-popular piece in recent times, it remains the connoisseurs choice – and a baller one’s, at that.

Vacheron Constantin Overseas Chronograph pricing and availability

The Vacheron Constantin Overseas Chronograph in pink gold is available now as a boutique exclusive. Price: A$133,000

Brand Vacheron Constantin
Model Overseas Chronograph
Case Dimensions 42.5mm (D) x 12.67mm (T)
Case Material 18k 5N pink gold
Water Resistance 150 metres
Crystal(s) Sapphire front and back
Dial Translucent blue lacquer, sunburst base
Lug Width Integrated
Bracelet 18k 5N pink gold, triple-blade folding clasp
Blue calfskin leather and blue rubber, both with 18k 5N pink gold buckle
Movement Calibre 5200, in-house, automatic, column wheel chronograph, Poinçon de Genève
Power Reserve 52 hours
Functions Hours, minutes, small seconds, date, chronograph
Availability Now
Price A$133,000