Collective Horology Introduces their Latest Limited Edition, a Collaboration with Montblanc Featuring a Gorgeous Minerva Caliber

Collective Horology, the private watch club/independent brand retailer/producer of thoughtful limited editions, is back with their latest release in an ongoing series of collaborations. This time, they’re working with Montblanc, tapping into the brand’s association with the historic Minerva manufacture, maker of some of the most important chronograph calibers in the history of watchmaking. The 1858 Minerva Monopusher Chronograph “Blue Arrow” P.05 is a high end “What if…?” hypothetical come to life, and a great showcase for a truly special movement. As with all Collective limited editions, this one is something more than a reissue or a tweaked colorway. It exists to tell a specific story about the brand in a way that can often only be done from the outside. 


According to Collective, the seed of inspiration for the P.05 came from Eric Wind, or more specifically a watch in his case at the 2022 Windup Watch Fair. That year, Eric brought a Minerva stopwatch to the show, and it reminded Collective founders Gabe Reilly and Asher Rapkin of Minerva’s sporting roots, opening up a series of entirely new design possibilities. The 1858 Monopusher Chronograph that Collective and Montblanc came up with drew on the sportier design cues from that stopwatch, including the colors, finishing techniques, and the case material (robust stainless steel, of course). The end result is a chronograph that has many key vintage inspired design elements that are core to Montblanc and Minerva, but feels remarkably contemporary simply because this precise watch is very much a new thing, and not related specifically to a wristwatch that Minerva ever made in its heyday. 

The little details, naturally, are where any good limited edition is really made, and there are a bunch within the P.05 that help to fill in bits and pieces of the Minerva story. Chief among them is the blue arrow, the namesake of the watch, that rotates around the dial via white gold, fluted bezel. The arrow is functional, adding another timing complication in addition to the chronograph, and is based on historic Minerva stopwatches like the one the Collective team found in Eric Wind’s case. As early as 1927, Minerva produced a stopwatch with a similar rotating bezel intended for countdown timing, and in 1939 they introduced this feature in a chronograph wristwatch known to collectors as the “Red Arrow.” This watch was intended for pilot’s with a fluted bezel designed to be easily gripped while wearing gloves. 

The chronograph can track up to 30 minutes via the minutes register at the 3:00 position, and the dial is also set up with multiple scales that add a level of authenticity to its Minerva heritage as well as plenty of visual interest. Most prominently, we get a snailed tachymeter scale in blue at the dial’s center, which becomes the P.05’s immediate focal point. At the dial’s perimeter, we get a telemeter scale in a matching shade of blue, all against a crisp white lacquered base with cream colored subdials at 3:00 and 9:00. Another key detail, and the one that is perhaps most important to hardcore chronograph collectors, is the double signed nature of the dial, with the classic Minerva arrowhead logo appearing near the 6:00 position, opposite the Montblanc wordmark at the top of the dial. 

The watches runs on the manually wound MB M13.21 caliber, a modern version of Minerva’s highly regarded and extremely collectible Calibre 13.20, a movement which traces its roots all the way back to 1923. One hundred years later, the newer caliber is still made in the same meticulous, old fashioned way as the 13.20. Virtually every movement component, save the jewels and screws, is made in-house in Minerva’s Villeret facilities, and the decoration and finishing is completed largely by hand. The movement is designed not just to be functional, but also to be beautiful. The best example of this is the signature “Devil’s tail” lateral clutch, which does not need to be nearly so ornate, but is meant to show off Minerva’s expertise at finishing internal angles. 

The new Montblanc 1858 Minerva Monopusher Chronograph “Blue Arrow” P.05 is a limited edition of 30 pieces, with a retail price set at $34,500. The watch can be ordered now via the Collective Horology website, with deliveries slated for December. For more on this watch and what went into making it, be sure to check out the Worn & Wound podcast tomorrow, where we’ll be speaking with Collective co-founder Asher Rapkin. 

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Zach is a native of New Hampshire, and he has been interested in watches since the age of 13, when he walked into Macy’s and bought a gaudy, quartz, two-tone Citizen chronograph with his hard earned Bar Mitzvah money. It was lost in a move years ago, but he continues to hunt for a similar piece on eBay. Zach loves a wide variety of watches, but leans toward classic designs and proportions that have stood the test of time. He is currently obsessed with Grand Seiko.