As we all know the Swiss watch industry is small. So small that sometimes it feels a little incestuous. Why incestuous? Well, when brands within the same group jumps in bed with each other (or maybe just the designers??) they come up with quite, erm, similar looking watches which may or may not be a pillow talk too far after one too many St Moritz at Grand Hotel Kempinski.
I suppose when it's within the same group it's ok, whereas if it's from a competitor, you can be sure high-priced lawyers are on the ready. This SIHH, we have the new MontBlanc Dual Time, which takes the case from JLC, mate it with dial and hands from Lange, slap on the nunber 12, and call it a day. Oh, and of course, undercut both brands in pricing.
Look I know I'm being a little mean here. There is nothing wrong with taking the best of the designs and something that's worked, and refine it for a different market. Everyone needs to make money, and Jerome Lambert (who's hand a HUGE influence in making JLC what it is today and I believe, have also had a hand in directing Lange) needs to bring up the watchmaking side of MontBlanc, cuz as we all know, people don't much use pens these days...
Taking inspiration from models that are known to work is a short cut to success. These watches are designed to appeal to first time prestige watch buyers. Someone who's not able to afford a JLC or a Lange just yet, but loved the look, and knows the brand.The picky anal watch collectors are collectively shaking their heads at MontBlanc watches, but seriously, Jerome wasn't given that role for no reason. I'll say give him another 5 years and you'll see. MontBlanc will no longer be known as a penmaker with a bit of wallets on the side.
MontBlanc Heritage Chronométrie Dual Time Specs
Calibre MB 29.19 with Manufacture complication
Power reserve Approx. 42 hours
Case diametre: 41mm
Case height: 10mm
Price: 3990 Euro