Starting as low as $2350 for a version with a leather strap, the GrandeVitesse Chronograph 24h is so far one of the most attractive “sporty” models from Longines. As usual, it features a robust and reliable caliber put inside a case crafted from high-grade stainless steel. What else would you expect from a watch that costs as high as $2.5K?
The new Longines GrandeVitesse Chronograph 24h is powered by the Caliber L686 automatic movement, which is based on the well-known ETA Valjoux 7754 that features a built-in (not just a plebeian add-on) column-wheel chronograph function, a simple calendar, and offers you tons of reliability at a relatively affordable price.
The ebauche is popular among serious brands. For example, Breitling uses the 7754 as a base for its B24 caliber.
First presented almost seven years ago during the Basel 2003 trade show, the movement also sports a second time-zone (aka GMT) complication using an extra central hand to tell the time in a 24-hour military style.
As usual, the arrow-shaped GMT hand is covered with a generous amount of Superluminova and there will be no problem seeing it even in total darkness. Well, it would be even better if the Swiss watchmaker has also equipped the dial with luminous hour-markers: they would perfectly match the sporty character of the timekeeper and also make it more legible at night.
This natural-born chronograph movement allows for a standard tri-compax dial layout with counters for 60 seconds (9 o’clock,) 30 minutes (12 o’clock,) and 12 hours (6 o’clock,) as well as a small date window at 3 o’clock.
The new Longines GrandeVitesse Chronograph 24h is presented in two versions.
One of them sports a black dial, black bezel with the usual tachymeter scale and a pair of fluted chronograph push-pieces. The other has a less interesting silver-toned dial and a polished steel bezel but has a bright-crimson insert in the chronograph’s “start” button, which is placed at 2 o’clock.
Frankly, I better like the one in black.
Although using standard dial layout, the GrandeVitesse Chronograph 24h is pleasant to look at and, being in the same style with the rest of the GrandVitesse line, looks like a nice entry-level chronograph for those only beginning their journey with the whole universe of fine watches.
As I have already mentioned, the GrandeVitesse Chronograph 24h is offered at a recommended street price of just over €2000, which makes it a nice choice for a person looking for a reliable and accurate chronograph with second time-zone display that also happens to offer good “value for money” ratio and has a good potential to keep its resale value in the medium-term perspective.
Longines GrandeVitesse Chronograph 24h specification
Price range: From $2350 (the version on a leather strap, ref. L3.618.104.22.168) to $2550 (on a steel bracelet, ref. L3.622.214.171.124)
Movement: Caliber L686 (based on ETA 7754), automatic, 25 jewels, 28,800 vph, 30.0 mm x 8.0 mm
Complications: Chronograph, date, 24h 2nd time-zone
Power reserve: 46 hours
Case: Stainless steel
Transparent back: Yes, sapphire crystal
Size: 44 mm
Dial: Black or silver
Hands: Black with SuperLuminova
Water resistance: 50 meters
Strap: Black or brown leather strap with Alcantara lining and a folding clasp; or a stainless steel bracelet with a triple folding safety clasp
Crystal: Sapphire, antireflective