Vacheron Constantin’s Overseas Chronograph is the Epitome of Sporty Elegance
There’s a craving among fans of Haute Horlogerie for high-end sports watches and we’ve not been disappointed by recent releases. Last year – the 50th anniversary of Audemars Piguet’s Royal Oak – saw the brand drop some great iterations of its own iconic sports watch. Rival Patek Philippe has the Nautilus, a firm favourite among watch aficionados that also gets regular updates. So it goes without saying that the final member of the holy trinity of watchmaking had to respond with something dramatic. And here it is, Vacheron Constantin‘s Overseas Chronograph – a piece aimed at travellers that also gives a nod to ’60s motor racing watches.
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Vacheron Constantin is famed for its high complications but describes its Overseas collection as geared towards adventure and escapism. Rather than focusing on watchmaking innovation, the emphasis here is on functionality, with a particular focus on ergonomics. It’s a collection dating back to 1977, although it wasn’t until 1999 that a chronograph model was introduced. It’s now the brand’s most popular line so we were thrilled to see a new release.
That new release is the Overseas Chronograph, a versatile watch that boasts a mid-sized stainless steel case and Vacheron Constantin’s signature six-sided Maltese Cross bezel. The chronograph functions are operated by two screw-lock pushers that sit at either side of the screw-down crown, signed with a Maltese Cross. Like the Royal Oak and Nautilus, this model is also equipped with an integrated bracelet. In this case, it’s a full stainless steel construction with half Maltese Cross links. It also includes a quick-release system so you can swap out the bracelet for the leather or rubber straps that are supplied.
The dial layout is instantly recognisable. Dubbed a panda dial, it’s a look most often associated with Rolex’s Daytona. The design originates in the ’60s with the black and white contrast ensuring that chronograph dials were highly legible. The Overseas Chronograph achieves this legibility with a handsome sunburst satin-finished silver dial. Sitting in a symmetrical pattern are three black subdials, with a neat date window tucked away between 4 and 5 o’clock. It’s a bold aesthetic that showcases the brand’s pursuit of sporty elegance.
Of course, Vacheron Constantin sits at the pinnacle of Swiss watchmaking due in part to its splendid in-house movements and the Overseas Chronograph is no exception. It is powered by the brand’s own Calibre 5200, an automatic chronograph movement with a 52-hour power reserve. The 22K gold rotor is decorated with the symbol of travel and exploration – the wind rose – and is visible through the exhibition back. The Overseas Chronograph is available now and priced at AUD$51,500.
Vacheron Constantin Overseas Chronograph 5500V/110A-B686
Case: Stainless Steel
Movement: In-house Calibre 5200
Bracelet: Stainless Steel, Calf Leather and Rubber
Water Resistance: 150M
Price: AUD $51,500