Mechanical Watches and Hand-wound Watches: The Great Movements of Longines

~The winged hourglass is a sign of trust~

The winged hourglass logo is synonymous with Longines.

"Longines" is an old French word meaning "fields full of flowers and flowing streams."

It is said that after his successful transatlantic voyage, Lindbergh commissioned a navigation watch to be made.

Longines is trusted by adventure professionals too.

Longines is one of the most popular brands of luxury watches.

It doesn't feel unpleasant to wear, and the design isn't intimidating to those around you.

With its timeless style, it is certainly a brand that can be safely recommended to those new to luxury watches as their first luxury watch.

Rolex is the single most popular luxury watch brand in terms of sales.

As is the case every year, Omega and Cartier take second and third place, followed by Longines.

It is a world-class watch that ranks in the top 5 of sales rankings almost every year.

Longines is now part of the Swatch Group, which also owns Omega.

When all the Swatch Group companies are combined, they are number one in sales, far surpassing other groups that sell luxury watches.

Longines plays a part in this.

If you're looking for something affordable, you can get a quartz watch for around 80,000 yen.

Even the Master Collection, all of whose models are automatic mechanical watches, can be purchased for less than 300,000 yen.

The secret to its low price is that it uses an ETA movement.

In the past, the company developed its own movements and sold them under the name "Wittner" through its North American distributor.

It is also popular among antique watch enthusiasts.

You can experience the world of Swatch, including Longines, at the Swatch Group Japan store in Ginza 7-chome, Tokyo.

For each brand handled by the Swatch Group, there is an elevator that goes directly to the brand's store, allowing customers to immerse themselves in the brand's world even before entering the store.

It might be a good idea to take a look at this before buying a Longines watch.

■ History

Longines is one of the oldest Swiss watch brands.

The company is based in Saint-Imier in the Swiss Jura Mountains, a city with a thriving watchmaking industry.

Longines was founded in 1832 when Auguste Agassiz founded the Agassiz & Co.

In 1852, Auguste Agassiz's nephew, Ernest Francillon, moved to Saint-Imier.

Gradually, he, who is also an economist, took over the cottage industry and gradually expanded it.

In 1867, Ernest Francillon opened the Longines factory in the area known as "Es Longines" in Saint-Imier.

The factory produced its first movement, the Caliber 20A, in the same year.

Needless to say, the name of this place is the inspiration for the Longines company name.

This 20-line calibre had an anchor escapement and a crown winding and setting system.

The “L20A” won an award at the Universal Exhibition held in Paris in 1867.

From this time on, the winged hourglass logo was used to prevent counterfeits from circulating on the market.

It was in 1867 that the image of Longines as we know it today was fully formed.

By the 1910s, Longines' employee base had exceeded 1,000, further strengthening its brand power.

In addition to round movements, they also create oval movements, and have created a number of original movements.

Lindbergh, who successfully crossed the Atlantic in 1927, used instruments to measure the distance traveled and wind direction, and a compass to determine direction.

I experienced firsthand that it was not suited to flying over the ocean, where you can't see anything around you.

Based on this experience, Lindbergh submitted an idea for a completely new pilot's watch to the FAI (Fédération Aeronautics International).

After seeing it, the person in charge asked Longines to manufacture the watch.

This is the "Hour Angle Watch," a timepiece that is still talked about today.

During the Second World War from the 1930s to the 1940s, the company supplied many watches to Britain and steadily grew in size.

In 1967, to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Longines factory and the achievement of total watch sales of 15 million units,

The company launched the Ultra Chron, a self-winding wristwatch with significantly higher precision than any previous model.

It is equipped with the Cal. L431, which has a high-beat of 10 vibrations per second (36,000 vibrations per hour), and is a representative Longines timepiece that is still talked about today.

A successor model to the Ultra Chron has now been announced as part of the Heritage Collection.

Although Longines had achieved many great feats, a major challenge awaited it.

In the 1970s, Longines was hit by the quartz shock, caused by the quartz mechanism developed by the Japanese company Seiko.

After some difficult decisions, Longines decides to focus solely on producing quartz watches.

The turning point came in 1983.

It became part of the Swatch Group.

In the 1990s, mechanical watches made a comeback and the company began producing mechanical watches again.

Longines still produces mechanical watches today, but instead of making their own movements, they use movements from ETA.

Opinions are divided on this point among watch enthusiasts, but those who insist on in-house movements still buy and sell vintage Longines at high prices.

On the other hand, the ETA movements installed in the current models are well-known for their high accuracy, and by outsourcing the movements,

By successfully reducing costs, they are able to bring the charm of mechanical watches to the world at the astonishing price of under 300,000 yen among luxury brand watches.


1. Watchmaking Tradition

This is the most common Longines line.

Longines Elegant Collection, Conquest Classic, Longines Saint-Imier Collection, Longines Evidenza,

The Longines Master Collection is divided into various models, but the most popular one is the Master Collection, which was released in 2005.

The secret to its popularity is that an automatic watch can be purchased for under 300,000 yen.

2. Longines Equestrian Collection

This is a collection I created for horse riding.

This model features a round shape reminiscent of a pocket watch and a band shaped like a bridle.

3. Sports

As the name suggests, this collection is made up of sports watches.

The chronograph is installed in two models, Conquest and HydroConquest, and is used to manage the time of professional athletes active in a variety of fields, both on land and in the water.

4. Heritage

I think this is a collection that will interest watch enthusiasts more than beginners.

They have also announced a successor model to the previously introduced Hour Angle Watch, the Ultra Chron, which is a faithful modern-day reproduction of the watch that Lindbergh actually ordered.

5. Elegance

Elegance is a collection exclusively for women.

There are various collections such as La Grande Classique de Longines, Longines PrimaLuna, Longines DolceVita, and Longines Symphonette.

Among the many luxury watches for women, there are many that feature modest designs without any flashy decorations.

If you are currently undecided about whether to buy a luxury watch, why not take a look at Longines?

You will surely notice that the quality is higher than the price.