A. Lange & Sohne, an elite German watchmaker as well as a jewel in the crown of the Richemont Group (just for context, their portfolio also includes such gems as IWC, Jaeger-LeCoultre, and Panerai,) has recently launched its new masterpiece. The A. Lange & Sohne Grand Lange 1 Moon Phase (Ref. 139.032) features a familiar design of its face with lots of off-centered sub-dials and the signature big date indicator, which is now powered by a new version of their gorgeous Caliber L095 hand-wound movement.
The Lange caliber L095.3 features the same design as the “base” movement but features a finely executed moon phase indication module.
Like many such complications introduced during the last five years or so by major watchmakers, the indicator features a complex set of gears that dramatically increase its accuracy. In fact, while a moon display of your normal “affordable” mechanical watch will force you to manually correct its reading every thirty months or so, this beautiful job only needs correction once per 122 years and a half.
What’s the most surprising is that they somehow managed to keep the caliber the same 4.7 millimeters thick as a slightly simpler Caliber L095.1 unit that powers their beautiful 2012 A. Lange & Sohne Grande Lange 1 (ref. 117.021) wristwatch.
If you look closer at the photos below, you will notice that the movement is not very advanced from the point of view of fine engineering, it is also meticulously decorated.
The moon disk, for example, is treated with their innovative coating process that makes it almost painful to look at, The stars (more than three hundred of them!) that you see on the disk are not just painted or printed, but are cut with a highly precise laser that makes them look almost as stark as those on a winter sky when an ice-cold northern wind blows out every single cloud off the night sky.
According to official specs, the watch comes in a pretty standard for the collection diameter of 41 millimeters and is just a trifle thicker than the aforementioned ref. 117.021 unit measuring in some 9.5 millimeters from top to bottom.
While the size of this beast makes this time measuring device stretch a bit the definition of a dressy timekeeper (at these dimensions the timekeeper starts to draw attention to itself, which is considered a bad taste among true connoisseurs), I understand the reason behind the decision. Sporting whole five off-centered indicators on its solid silver dial, the timepiece needed some extra space for them to breathe. Thus the relatively thin bezel and shorter lugs to make it look as compact as was practically possible.
The version that you see pictured in this article is crafted from rose gold (ref. 139.032), but there is also an equally beautiful version in yellow gold and a more modest-looking (but a lot more expensive) version in platinum. As far as I understand, variations in gold will retail at approximately €38,900 and the one in platinum will bear an even more impressive price tag of €50,900.
If I understood them correctly, Lange doesn’t plan to limit the timekeeper’s production, which is nice: this grim world needs more beautiful artifacts in it.
Build Quality: 5/5
Overall Legibility: 4.5/5
Nighttime Legibility: 2/5
Value for Money: 4.5/5
Overall Rating: 4.5/5
Photos: A. Lange & Sohne
Build quality: 5/5
Value for money: 4.5/5
A. Lange & Sohne Grand Lange 1 Moon Phase in Rose Gold (Ref. 139.032) specification
Price: €38,900 (versions in gold) / €50,900 (platinum)
Movement: Hand-wound, Caliber L095.3, in-house, Made in Germany
Number of jewels: 45
Movement frequency: 21,600 vph
Power reserve: 72 hours (3 days)
Movement decoration: Hand-decorated
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, big date, power reserve, moon-phase
Cases: Yellow gold (139.021) / Rose gold (139.032) / Platinum (139.025)
Size: 41.00 mm
Case height: 9.50 mm
Dial: Solid silver
Hour markers: Matching case
Water resistance: 30 meters
Strap: Hand-stitched reddish-brown crocodile leather strap on Lange prong buckle in rose gold (or yellow gold, or platinum)
Crystal: Sapphire, antireflective