The A. Lange & Sohne Saxonia is now available in a slightly larger, but better-proportioned case crafted from 18-karat rose gold: growing both in diameter and thickness the new (Ref. 380.032) counterintuitively looks thinner than the previous version of the piece that featured a hand-wound caliber inside its compact body.
Case & Strap
Although the new timepiece doesn’t differ too much from the hand-wound Ref. 215.032, it is still just a tad larger.
While the hand-wound version is available in a slightly smaller, but sort of chunkier case 37 mm in diameter and 7.3 mm thick, the new model will be delivered in a similarly shaped body 38.50 mm in diameter and 7.80 mm high.
Some people still may find this version too small, but this is an almost perfect size for almost any customer. Be your wrist dry and skinny or, um, thick in the bone, the time measuring accessory will still look good on you (or your heir).
Perhaps, the only thing that you may find not terribly comfortable is the setting/winding crown that is a bit too small to my taste.
As always, Lange supplies the watch with a gorgeous alligator leather strap that not only nicely corresponds with the rose gold body but also feels “at home” even on a larger wrist.
The weight gain probably comes courtesy of the new Lange caliber L086.1 automatic movement, which is a little thicker than the Lange 941.1 hand-wound engine.
With its meticulous finish, the mechanism easily compensates for the timekeeper’s reserved and even cold exterior.
Even if at one day A. Lange & Sohne has decided to leave the business of making watches and start simply selling their mechanisms in little sapphire cases, I am sure that there would be enough demand for the little engines to justify the effort.
As you can see, the open-worked yellow gold oscillating weight with an inevitable strip of heavier platinum on its outer edge for more efficient winding features a rather expensive “tremblage” engraving technique that makes the raised “A. LANGE & SÖHNE” logo really stand out. Combined with the roughly machine-brushed surface of the rest of the rotor, this small piece alone justifies the premium that A. Lange & Sohne puts on its timepieces.
But, of course, the rest of the mechanism, too, is exquisitely finished with the balance bridge featuring their signature hand-engraved pattern that somehow reminds me of decor on vintage firearms, while the three-quarter plate (also their trademark) is decorated with Glashutte ribbing (their version of the iconic Geneva stripes) that nicely accentuates the circular-graining pattern on the mainplate.
The polished screws (some of them blued) provide the whole display with a nice touch of elegance.
The watch is equipped with a solid-silver “argente” dial that features applied baton-shaped hour markers and solid gold lancet hands. The double hour-marker at 12 o’clock makes it easier to tell the time when the Saxonia is not on your wrist.
The choice of materials makes the timepiece easy to read, although nighttime readability is still a problem since Lange simply refuses to put the Superluminova compound on their dress watches. This may not be a problem for a timekeeper, which is designed to be worn only during office hours, but some may still find this not particularly comfortable.
As usual, the subsidiary seconds sub-dial is located at 6 o’clock counterbalancing the Lange logo at 12 o’clock.
Photos: A. Lange & Sohne
A. Lange & Sohne Saxonia Automatic in Rose Gold (Ref. 380.032) specification
Price: $26,000 (MSRP)
Movement: Automatic, Lange caliber L086.1, 3.7 mm thick, 21,600 vph, in-house, Made in Germany
Movement decoration: Decorated by hand; three-quarter plate with Glashutte ribbing, spring barrel is finished with solarisation on both sides, chamfered and polished.
Functions: Hours, minutes, small seconds
Power reserve: 72 hours
Case material: 18-karat rose gold
Size: 38.50 mm
Case height: 7.80 mm
Dial: Solid silver “argente”
Hands: Gold, lancet
Water resistance: 30 meters
Strap: Authentic leather with color-matched stitching and 18-karat rose gold pin buckle
Crystal: Sapphire, antireflective