Vacheron Constantin was established in 1755 and has been making exquisite luxury timepieces ever since. Just recently at the 2017 SIHH, Vacheron Constantin has unveiled their new Reference 57260 — an astronomical model with incredible horological complications. Perhaps we shall get to their new collections in the future, but for now, this review showcases a stunning classic: the Historiques American 1921.
Brand: Vacheron Constantin
Type: Historiques American 1921
Purchase Link: http://www.vacheron-constantin.com/en/watches/historiques/historiques-american-1921-82035-000r-9359.html
A part of the “Historiques” Collection, the American 1921 model is one of the most stunning, simple, and elegant designs we have come across. It is both interesting and contemporary while honoring the Swiss company’s creativity as they create modern versions of their iconic pieces.
Technical Specifications and Features:
- Case Size: 40mm x 40mm
- Case Shape: Cushion
- Swiss Made (Geneva)
- Movement: Manual Winding
- Caliber: 4400 AS
- Jewels: 21
- Case Material: 18K 5N Pink Gold
- Dial: Analog
- Dial Material: Metal
- Dial Color: White
- Dial Features: Off-Set Full Arabic Numeral Hour Markers; Subdial
- Crystal: Sapphire
- Case Back: Transparent Case Back — Sapphire Glass
- Case Thickness: 8mm
- Crown Material: 18K 5N Pink Gold
- Band Type: Strap
- Band Material: Alligator Mississippiensis (Alligator from Mississippi, Louisiana — USA)
- Band Color: Dark Brown
- Clasp: Ardillon Buckle
- Buckle Material: 18K 5N Pink Gold
- Power Reserve: 65 hours
- Water Resistance: 3 Bar (30 meters / 99 feet)
This incredible Vacheron Constantin uses a Swiss-made manual winding movement, made in Switzerland. This Caliber 4400 AS is powerful and simple, allowing for minutes and hours to be tracked off-set on the dial as well as small seconds to be tracked on a separate subdial on at the off-set 3 o’clock position.
Caliber 4400 AS Specifications:
- Caliber: 4400 AS
- Energy: Manual Winding
- Jewels: 21
- Power Reserve: 65 hours
- Frequency: 4 Hz (28,000 v.p.h.)
- Number of Parts: 127
- Diameter of Movement: 28.60mm
- Thickness of Movement: 2.80mm
- Indications: Minutes, Hours, Small Seconds
- Swiss Made (Hallmark of Geneva)
Right off the bat, the first thing you notice about the materials of this timepiece is that it is made of luxury quality 18K 5N Pink Gold — the cushion-shaped 40mm x 40mm case, the crown, and the clasp are made from this fine material and it glows warmly against the dark brown alligator strap.
The case is cushion-shaped but the white metallic dial is circular within it, which adds a wonderful dimension to the design and allows the dial pattern to really work. You know what we’re talking about — the Arabic numerals marking each hour are elegant and applied in black (as are the minute markers around the outer rim — but the entire analog design is off-set.
Rather than 12 o’clock sitting at (well, 12 o’clock) the top of the case in the center, the entire design is rotated clockwise so that the 12 o’clock position lines up with the top right corner of the cushion case.
There are two crowns on this watch — one at the traditional right hand side of the case (this allows you to set the time), and there is a larger Pink Gold crown at the top right hand corner of the case (right above the off-set 12 o’clock position). This second crown is for the manual winding of the movement.
The simple elegance of this piece is not easy to pull off. While the timekeeping is simple, creating a movement to work off-set and to power with an incredible 65 hours of reserve between manual windings is something that takes work. Vacheron Constantin made an incredible design and backed up this quality built piece with a wonderful caliber 4400 AS to make this American 1921 one of their more classic and gorgeous pieces.
We do wish that Vacheron Constantin gave us a greater water resistance beyond 30 meters. A 50 meter W/R would make wearers feel a bit more confident.
The functionality of this luxury watch certainly matches up to Swiss standards. The timekeeping of this watch is wonderfully simple, with matching hour and minute hands tracking the time. The seconds subdial is easily precise with the 21-jewel caliber 4400 AS manual winding movement.
The water resistance is rated for 30 meters / 99 feet, which means you can wash your hands and get rain on it without issue. If you find that you have accidentally showered with it on or leisurely swim with it, you should be okay, but it is best to not take too many chances with this gorgeous luxury piece.
Obviously, the off-set dial design is not just interesting looking and gorgeous, but it is fully functional and it is quite easy to tell the time even though 12 o’clock is angled at the top right corner of the cushion case.
Even the metal dial is interesting — this luxury brand uses a white dial with a lighter white, almost metallic, subdial color for the separate seconds. This allows the use of the small seconds being tracked in the separate subdial to really show off. The dial hands are classic and match the black coloring of the equally-classic Arabic numerals perfectly.
Details are everything. Vacheron Constantin really went through this design to make sure that its elegance showed but did not have too many different materials and colors trying to battle for attention.
Using a Sapphire crystal for the front and a transparent backing made of Sapphire glass as well, you can view the 4400 AS caliber movement that lies underneath the 18K 5N Pink Gold cushion case. The use of dark brown alligator leather from Mississippi for the strap is the perfect compliment to a color such as Pink Gold. Finishing off the design with an 18K 5N Pink Gold Ardillon Buckle, you are wearing pure luxury from crown to clasp.
The Vacheron Constantin Historiques American 1921 Men’s Watch (82035/000R/9359) retails for $34.000.
You can purchase it on Chrono24, unworn and brand new, for only $27,990.
PrestigeTime is selling this watch for $25,500.
You can, of course, find a Vacheron Constantin boutique near you to purchase this timepiece, as well.
Vacheron Constantin Purchase Link: http://www.vacheron-constantin.com/en/watches/historiques/historiques-american-1921-82035-000r-9359.html
Chrono24 Purchase Link: http://www.chrono24.com/vacheronconstantin/historiques-american-1921–id4114950.htm
PrestigeTime Purchase Link: https://www.prestigetime.com/item/Vacheron-Constantin/Historiques-American-1921/82035~000r-9359.html