The Longines Spirit collection welcomes a new member today with the release of a new Flyback Chronograph, bringing a (perhaps surprising) element of Longines heritage into the mix along the way. Longines may not be the first name that comes to mind when hearing the word ‘flyback’ but it probably should be, and this latest Spirit watch will serve as a reminder to the brand’s extensive history with the complication, which dates back to the 1920’s. Visually, the new Spirit Flyback Chronograph presents a cleaner execution than the existing chronograph, placing emphasis on the uniqueness of this complication, however the visual identity of the Spirit collection is clear and present here.
Let’s take a quick step back, and get a better understanding of Longines’ place in history when it comes to the flyback complication. Longines had a lovely chronograph movement called the 13.33Z first introduced in 1913, which, later in life, likely served as a testbed for the flyback mechanism that would flourish in the more well-known 13Z. As far as we know, Longines placed the first flyback mechanism within the 13.33Z in 1929, and it wouldn’t be until June 12th of 1935 that the brand filed for Swiss patent on the mechanism, which would go on to be granted in March of 1936 (Brevet 183262). There’s much more to read on the topic, which has been covered beautifully by SJX and collector Dr. Christian Müller right here.