Alpina’s New Entries To The Alpiner Collection
Mention the term “sporty timepiece” and the mind tends to immediate conjure up either a diver or a pilot watch. The occasional chronograph might also surface, but our association of sports watches with these archetypes is undeniable. For something a little different, check out Alpina’s Alpiner collection. It styles its entries as sporty watches, but […]
Mention the term “sporty timepiece” and the mind tends to immediate conjure up either a diver or a pilot watch. The occasional chronograph might also surface, but our association of sports watches with these archetypes is undeniable. For something a little different, check out Alpina’s Alpiner collection. It styles its entries as sporty watches, but takes design cues from mountaineering pursuits, which is less frequently explored in horology. Of course, a mountaineering watch wouldn’t have any distinguishing features, unlike a diver’s uni-rotating bezel or a pilot’s supremely legible dial. Here, Alpina is determined to leave no doubt about the watches’ heritage and has engraved its “3 summits symbol” on the caseback to represent the Jungfrau, the Monch and the Eiger in the Swiss Alps. Beyond this, we are happy to report that the Alpiner collection’s two new additions differ enough from each other to speak to both buyers looking for the aforementioned “sporty timepiece”, and those seeking something dressier.
Of the two new entries, the Alpiner Automatic is the softer, more muted watch. Its AL-525 self-winding movement drives the three centrally mounted hands and the date complication at six o’clock, while holding a 38-hour power reserve. The dial has a textured sunburst pattern and a matte outer ring, upon which alternating Arabic numeral and indexes have been applied – the design is pretty run-of-the-mill for a classic watch. Thankfully, Alpina demonstrates their understanding that the magic’s in the details with some carefully thought out design choices. Rather than apply Superluminova on the indexes directly, dots have been placed on the outer fringe to keep the indexes’ metallic look, yet maintain legibility in the dark. A splendid touch, if we may say so. Alpina is also offering the Automatic in various combinations of dial and case colours, thus ensuring that there is something for everyone.
The sportier Alpiner Automatic Chronograph shares its sibling’s look, but has a busier dial given its chronograph function. The usual suspects are at work here: the chronograph pushers flanking the crown, small seconds, 30 minute and 12 hour chronograph subdials all come together to make this timepiece instantly familiar to anyone who has ever used a chronograph. What’s a little unusual in this watch is the telemeter scale around the minute chapter ring. For those who are unfamiliar, this scale is used in conjunction with the chronograph seconds hand to estimate distances – an invaluable tool in the days preceding laser rangefinders. Here, it gives the timepiece a vintage vibe that harks back to the days before modern equipment helped conquer mountaineering. Like the Automatic, the Automatic Chronograph has several colour variants, this time for its main dial and chronograph subdials.