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Alpina relaunches its Extreme Regulator, first seen in 2005, with a new dial and a smaller cushion-shaped case.

Alpina’s new Alpiner Extreme Regulator.

The new model, which debuts this week at Geneva Watch Days, is called the Alpiner Extreme Regulator and is now set in a more widely appealing 41mm steel case, considerably smaller than the 48mm case of the initial model and the 45mm size of more recent examples.

The Regulator was considered a flagship model when Alpina launched it as the Avalanche Extreme Regulator seventeen years ago. But even with a new size, the latest model evokes a similar assertive, modern appeal. 

Behinds its regulator display of separate hours, minutes and seconds hands, the new Alpiner Extreme Regulator maintains its adventure-focused mission with a thick screw-in crown and caseback, and a strong 200-meter water resistance rating.

Strong Dial

Likewise, the dial projects strength. Alpina’s triangle logo is employed as a grid across the dial, symbolizing Alpine peaks. The grey pattern captures light, creating a more visually compelling dial than the initial models, on which the logo decorated only the center of the dial. Alpina adds even more visual texture with the case finish, which is nicely brushed, with polished corners.

Atop the grey ‘peaks,’ Alpina places highly luminescent hands in an almost typical regulator layout, with a large central minutes hand and separate hour and seconds subdial.

The hour subdial on regulator clock dials is classically positioned along the central axis at the top or bottom. Alpina however positions the hour subdial between the 9 o’clock and 11 o’clock positions, focusing the eye more clearly toward the minutes hand.   

Inside the Alpiner Extreme Regulator Automatic Alpina retains its time-tested automatic ETA-based AL-650 caliber, the movement that powered the 2005 Regulator.

Alpina’s choice to host a regulator dial within its bedrock collection has long set the Geneva brand apart from many watchmakers offering affordably priced Swiss sports watches.

The choice to revive the regulator is equally courageous, especially given the regulator’s niche appeal among collectors, especially at this price range. But at first glance, Alpina’s update, with its appealing new case size and terrific dial design, offers more than enough well-considered change to meet that challenge. 

Alpina is limiting the Alpiner Extreme Regulator Automatic to 888 pieces. Price: $2,195.  

Frederique Constant unveils a new look for its Classics Heart Beat Manufacture collection, revealing a new dial, new indexes and a retro 39mm case.

The Frederique Constant Classics Heart Beat Manufacture in a 39mm steel case. The new design is also offered with a pink gold case.

Perhaps the most notable change in the new design, which debuts this week during Geneva Watch Days,  is how the Geneva-based watchmaker is exposing the watch’s escapement, or ‘Heart Beat.’

Rather than the ‘comma-shaped’ aperture at the 12 o’clock position that characterized the dial of the Heart Beat collection since 2004, the new collection erases the comma in favor of a true circle that is now positioned at the 6 o’clock position.

The first Frederique Constant Heart Beat models in 1994 quickly became a signature design for what was then a young watchmaking company. The look has been emblematic for the company in the years since, and Frederique Constant has used the design to introduce its FC-910 manual-wind manufacture caliber in 2004, as well as its FC-930, the watchmakers’ first automatic caliber, a few years later.

Original size

The aperture update is only one aspect the Heart Beat’s redesign. A 39mm case size is a return to the original dimension of the Heart Beat Manufacture models, which have been offered in larger sizes in recent years. And the 2022 collection also boasts more classical Roman numerals on the dial, paired with thinner indexes.

Frederique Constant notes that the new, subtler indexes overlay a lacquered white dial and are paired with traditional railway markers, echoing watches of the early 20th century.  Finally, Frederique Constant revives the same hand design it used in 2004, with a slender leaf shape for the minutes and “heart” hand for the hours.

The onion crown on the watch, which will be retained on the new collection, winds an automatic FC-930-3 manufacture caliber, which offers a thirty-eight hour power reserve. Frederique Constant decorates the movement with fine pearling and Côtes de Genève stripes, visible through the open caseback.

Frederique Constant is offering the new Classics Heart Beat Manufacture, in two limited series’. The first is cased in pink gold on a brown alligator strap and limited to 93 pieces ($17,995). The second is made of steel on a black alligator strap and limited to 930 pieces ($4,395).  Availability is in December 2022

 

 

Frederique Constant helps celebrate this July 4th with a red, white and blue U.S.-exclusive limited edition worldtimer. The Geneva-based watchmaker issues its 42mm steel-cased Classics Worldtimer Manufacture: Summer of 76 as a limited edition of seventy-six pieces to commemorate U.S. Independence Day.

The new Frederique Constant Classic Worldtimer Manufacture: Summer of 76.

With a red seconds hand and date accent, blue hands, blue dial and an appropriately hued trio of straps, the new watch clearly favors the colors of the American flag. And to underscore its American tribute, each watch will be sold with a red alligator leather strap with off-white stitching, a white alligator leather strap and a blue rubber strap.

Not enough July 4 references? Check out the red star that replaces the 4 in the date display and the American flag amid the U.S. cities listed on the 24-hour time flange.

 

 

 

 

 

Ten-year anniversary

First seen ten years ago, the Classics Worldtimer Manufacture has been one of the watchmaker’s best sellers, combining classical world time functionality with a contemporary display ­– and a surprisingly affordable price tag. Collectors have also been drawn to its in-house traditional world time movement (the FC-718 automatic caliber), a rare feature in a watch priced less than $5,000.

Like its pricier counterparts, this worldtimer allows its wearer to read the time in the twenty-four cities that represent the global time zones of reference, all with immediate indication of daytime or nighttime. And all Classics Worldtimer indications are set with the crown. This means that a traveler need not worry about changing the time as he or she enters another time zone. The local time (by central hands) and the domestic time (by the moving disk) are automatically synchronized with each other.

This latest worldtimer is the third made by Frederique Constant to celebrate the watch’s tenth anniversary. The watchmaker says that this U.S. exclusive edition shows “the importance of the U.S. market for the brand.”

Frederique Constant will offer the Classics Worldtimer Manufacture: Summer of 76 as a limited edition of seventy-six, with pre-ordering now for delivery in November.

Price: $4,795.

 

Specifications: Frederique Constant Classics Worldtimer Manufacture: Summer of 76

(FC-718USWM4H6, limited edition of 76)

Movement: Automatic FC-718 in-house caliber with all functions adjustable by the crown. 
Perlage & circular Côtes de Genève decorations
, 38-hour power reserve, 28,800 alt/h.

Case: Polished 42mm by 12.1mm stainless steel three-part. Scratch-resistant and anti-reflective convex sapphire crystal, see-through caseback, water-resistant to 30 meters.

Dial: Light blue and silver with globe decoration, black pearl color applied indexes filled with white luminous treatment, 
24H disc with day (white) & night (blue) indication,
 white city disc with 24 cities and U.S. flag. 
Hand-polished blue color hour and minute hands Hand-polished red color second hand. Light blue date counter at 6 o’clock with sunray guilloché decoration in the center, hand-polished silver color hand and a red star replacing the number 4.

Strap: Red alligator leather with off-white stitching. 
Includes an additional white alligator leather strap and a blue rubber strap.

Price: $4,795. Limited to 76 pieces.

 

 

Frederique Constant’s partnership with Austin-Healey has produced many of the Geneva watchmaker’s most fetching watches, with most featuring British racing green somewhere on the dial.

The new Frederique Constant Vintage Rally Healey Chronograph Automatic.

Fortunately, this year’s debuts are no exception. But for 2022, which happens to be the 70th anniversary of Austin-Healey, Frederique Constant offers a twist with the debut of two Healey limited editions.

This year Frederique Constant will make two versions of a new Vintage Rally Healey Chronograph Automatic. The watch, with bi-compax dial and two racing red hands, will be made with one non-U.S. version limited to ten watches while a second will be made as a 700-piece limited edition.

The difference between the two is a simple numeral swap: On the ten-piece limited model the watchmaker references Austin Healey’s 70th anniversary by replacing the numeral 12 with the numeral 70 at the top of the dial. The 700-piece edition features the 12 in its traditional location, with “70th Anniversary” text at 6 o’clock.

Both watches are 42mm steel chronographs powered by the watchmaker’s Sellita-based FC-397 automatic caliber, visible via sapphire caseback. The dial here is one of this watchmaker’s finest thanks in part to its British Racing Green hue, red chronograph hands and the Healey logo in its original font.

The classic bi-compax dial offers a seconds counter on the left and the chronograph’s minutes counter on the right. The two chronograph hands are easy to read in their bright red hue with the central hand for the seconds and the 30-minutes countdown hand at the three o’clock position.

Frederique Constant provides an asphalt black strap finished with two lines of topstitching said to mimic the two white lines marking the edges of a racetrack.

The new Vintage Rally Healey Chronograph Automatic comes in its dedicated gift box alongside a miniature replica of the famous Austin-Healey 100S, number plate NOJ393.

Price: $3,195.

Specifications: Frederique Constant Vintage Rally Healey Chronograph Automatic

(Ref. FC-397HDGR5B6, a limited edition of 700)

Movement: FC-397 caliber (Sellita-base), automatic
 48-hour power reserve, 25 jewels, 28,800 vph.

Case: 42mm
by 14.45 mm polished stainless steel (3-part) with scratch-resistant convex sapphire crystal and case back. Water-resistant to 50 meters.

Dial: Dark green with matte finishing, white graduation printed on inner ring and outer ring, applied silver color indexes filled with white luminous treatment, Arabic number 12, Healey 70th anniversary logo at 6 o’clock, silver color hour and minute hands filled with white luminous treatment, red chronograph seconds hand,
chronograph’s minutes counter at 3 o’clock with red hand,
60 seconds counter at 9 o’clock with silver color hand.

Bracelet: Black calf leather strap with off-white stitching.

Price: $3,195.

 

 

 

Alpina launches the Seastrong Diver 300 Automatic Calanda, its first timepiece made with a 100% recycled stainless steel case. The watch, named to pay tribute to the Calanda, the first ship to fly the Swiss flag, uses recycled steel sourced from the shipping industry and made by Thyssen Krupp. Alpina pairs the watch’s 42mm case with a recycled plastic wristband.

The new Alpina Seastrong Diver 300 Automatic Calanda.

The Geneva-based watchmaker adds the new dive watch to its expanding lines of eco-friendly models. You might recall that Alpina also launched the Seastrong Diver Gyre Automatic collection in 2020. That watch features a case made largely (70%) from plastic fishing net debris. In addition, that model’s strap is made using recycled plastic bottles while its box is made from recycled plastic.

Available as a limited edition of 300 units, the Seastrong Diver 300 Automatic Calanda’s case is polished with a satin finish, while its unidirectional rotating notched bezel is brush-finished. Alpina embeds the hour and minute hands with vintage beige luminescence and tips the seconds hand with a red triangle Alpina logo.

Alpina sets the watch’s matte black dial with appliqué indexes that have also been brushed with the vintage beige luminescence. Fit with an AL-525 Sellita-based automatic movement, the watch is water-resistant to 300 meters thanks to its full screw-in case back and crown. Alpina embellishes the caseback with mountain peaks placed under a trident in a nod to the watch’s seaworthiness.

As noted above, Alpina has paired the watch’s recycled case with a recycled plastic (PET) strap in grey and black. Each watch comes in a case entirely made from recycled plastic, alongside a single-page warranty and a certificate of authenticity printed on FSC Recycled-certified paper.

Price: $1,895.