Montblanc 1858 Automatic Chronograph Limited Edition

by Chamath Gamage
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Montblanc’s 1858 collection was released to pay tribute to the watch manufacturer Minerva which was founded more than 160 years ago. The Minevera manufacture based in Villeret in Switzerland, specialised in producing high-performance chronograph movements. Minerva manufacture is one of the very few companies in existence that has the capability of producing every single piece that goes into their watch movements in-house.

In 1920, Minerva designed and produced one of the first manually wound mono-pusher chronograph watches. This was thanks to the smaller movements made available by the brand. The watches made during the 1920’s and 1930’s period by Minerva was used widely for military use and exploration. So why is it that Montblanc is paying tribute to another watch manufacture’s collection?

It has  to do with Montblanc’s parent company; Richemont Group. Richemont Group acquired Minerva Manufacture in 2006 and wanted one of the watch brands owned by Richemont to work alongside Minerva. Each brand presented their case with Montblanc being the most impressive and ultimately was successful in being able to work with Minerva. Minerva’s entire production became available to Montblanc. This is why Montblanc’s 1858 collection was released, as a way of honouring the Minerva Manufacture. 

The Montblanc 1858 Automatic Chronograph limited edition is a piece that is designed with mountain exploration in mind. With the green and bronze hues shown throughout the watch, it reflects the colours found in nature and mountains alike.  

The 1858 Automatic Chronograph limited edition comes in a 42mm casing that is made from bronze material. The dial colour is a khaki green, which contrasts really well against the bronze casing. To make readability on the watch easier, Montblanc has decided to use beige coloured Arabic numerals for the indexes along with similar coloured hands for the hour, minute chronograph seconds hand and the hands on the two counters. The rail-road minute track and the two counters have been done on a white colour so they stand our clearly against the khaki background. The two counters represent the 30 minute counter at the 3 o’clock position and the constant second counter at the 9 o’clock position. 

Montblanc’s original logo from 1930 is also displayed on the dial under the 12hour marker, with the Montblanc mountain in between the words Mont-Blanc. This is to further emphasise what this watch is. A testament to a nice design feature by Montblanc is the intricate creation of the hour and minute hands. These hands have been designed in a cathedral shaped “cloisonne” manor with a slightly domed finish as described by Montblanc. 

The movement thats used in the Montblanc 1858 Automatic Chronograph limited edition is the MB25.11 calibre. This calibre is based on the Sellitea SW-510 ETA movement and has been modified so that the two sub-dials/counters can be featured on the watch.  The MB 25.11 calibre movement has been tested and certified by Montblanc Laboratory Test 500 and has a power reserve of approximately 48 hours.

WatchAdvice’s Thoughts

The new Montblanc 1858 Automatic Chronograph limited edition showcases its roots to the past while still having a modern and contemporary design with design cues expressing nature and mountain exploration. This watch is a very unique collectors item that is limited to 1858 pieces. 

As mentioned earlier, the colours used throughout the watch compliment each other very nicely, with the contrast between the beige and white on the khaki background making the dial really stand out.

The watch comes with a modern nato strap in a more darker green colour which complement the beautiful dial. Unfortunately the caseback of the watch is closed off, however Montblanc has included an engraving of the Mont Blanc mountain with a vintage Montblanc compass. This is done as a tribute to the watch manufacture, Minerva. 

Inspired by the mountain explorations Montblanc’s 1858 Automatic Chronograph limited edition is sure to be a hit in 1858 line up.

Montblanc 1858 Automatic Chronograph limited edition specification:

  • Case diameter : 42mm
  • Case material : Bronze
  • Dial: Khaki green dial with beige luminescent Arabic numerals
  • Water resistance : 100 meters/ 330 feet
  • Movement : Calibre MB 25.11, Automatic, self-winding
  • Power reserve : Approximately 48 hours

Australian Retail Pricing : $7,440.00

Availability : Available now, Limited edition of 1858 pieces

Enquire at local Montblanc boutiques :

  • Montblanc Brisbane – 171 Edward St, Brisbane City QLD 4000
  • Montblanc Melbourne – 175-177 Collins Street and Chadstone Shopping Centre
  • Montblanc Sydney – 115-117 King Street, 75 Castlereagh Street and Westfield Bondi Junction
  • Montblanc Perth -125 St Georges Tce
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