If I were to extract the essence of the weeping and gnashing of teeth that are common in most comment sections, it might turn out that zealots don’t always go along with many big-brand products. It was like a town-hall meeting in jaws, but instead of crying about sharks or how long the beach would be closed, I stood in the corner of the room and listened to people cry of “I wish there was no date!” and “42mm is unwearable!” While famous brands generally have a great idea of what their mass audience wants, it is much rare to see a big brand actively tuning their product in the hopes of speaking directly to fans. Among the larger brands, few are as effective as Longines in attracting people, and actually, this latest release has a fingernail dragging effect on the chalkboard in their successful traditional line, enough for me to compare it to my chin. It’s called the Longines legacy classic, and it looks great.
From the same people that brought us the Legend Diver, the Skin Diver, and the BigEye Chronograph, the new Heritage Classic is a lovely vintage-encouraged time-only model with a crisp sector dial surrounded by a 38.5mm brushed steel case. It’s a typical and simple form that really leverages strong contrast and proportions with a silver-tone dial, black markings, and blued steel hands. Additional interest comes via a traditional sub-seconds display at six, minimal branding, and a handsome crosshair splitting the center dial layout. Underneath that dial ticks an exclusive caliber from Longines, the automatic L893.5. Owing to Longines’s position within the best replica watches, the L893.5 features a silicon balance spring and a power reserve of 64 hours.
From the images and the specs, I have to say that the Heritage Classic looks like a home run. While we don’t yet have measurements for thickness or lug to lug, a 38.5mm brushed steel sector dial no date Longines ticks a lot of boxes for a lot of watch nerds. The design, while certainly vintage-inspired, dates back well before the 1960s and ’70s design language we are used to within the “new vintage” trend, and I like that they avoided any overt or heavy-handed attempts at making the watch appear “old”. On the contrary, the Heritage Classic leans on a clean and balanced design that offers excellent legibility, a bit of color, and so many tonalities thanks to its two-part silver dial.
The replica Longines is offering the Heritage Classic in one of two models, differentiated by their straps, with one reference getting a blue leather strap and the other a black leather strap. Both references will also come with a contrasting NATO and a tool to help change straps. As much as I’d love to see the Longines choose drill ears, the classic tradition is a beautiful size, very handsome, well-equipped watch.