Longines is currently one of the biggest players in the watchmaking industry with an income of over $1bn annually. It’s also got a fascinating history to it. It used to be known as a maker of some of the best watches on the planet back in the 20th century and regularly competed in, and won, observatory trials. Sadly, those days are over and Longines, successful though it is, doesn’t seem to have the same charm as it once did. Hopefully, this new variant of their popular HydroConquest line can inject some vigour back into the brand.
Colours on watches are very popular, but it’s releasing the right colours at the right time that makes the watch stand out in the market. Blue is the colour of the moment right now, and Longines already has a HydroConquest in blue. So, the next logical step would be another muted colour that we see a lot in a natural environment: green. Green has served the Submariner well over the years, so it’s a good place for a diving watch to start.
Longines is launching three versions of the HydroConquest at the same time here. The first two are available at any Longines boutique or Authorised Dealer and come in two different sizes. Ref. L3.781.4.06.6/9 is a 41mm version offering a stainless steel case and either a steel bracelet or a textured rubber strap. Ref. L3.782.4.06.6/9 is the 43mm version and also has a choice of either strap or bracelet. Both watches come with an ETA A31.L01 calibre which Longines calls the Calibre L888.3 which has a 64-hour power reserve, automatic winding and a date. I like the clean dial of the HydroConquest line, with the markers spread to the far edges to keep the dial uncluttered with those big numerals. Happily, no matter which version of the two you choose and whichever strap option you choose the price will stay the same at €1370.
The last watch on show today is a boutique exclusive: this edition, the ref. L3.785.4.06.6 has the same green colourations as the other two watches, but to keep it a little more, well, exclusive, the dial has changed. On the previous watches, the dial was a matte green colour, but on this, it’s a vertically brushed ceramic dial which is a slightly lighter shade of green. The movement is somewhat different, too, based on the ETA A31.L11, the L888.5 calibre has the same power reserve and date function, but it also includes a silicone balance spring now. The price of this one is €2050.