One of the most interesting "evolutionary" watches from A. Lange & Sohne
in 2011 is this Zeitwerk Striking Time. I call it an evolutionary piece as it builds on the original Zeitwerk by adding a striking mechanism. What that does it automatically sound a special chime on the hour and at each quarter hour mark. Basically the hammers seen on the front of the dial strike the gong that goes around the dial each fifteen minutes. Watches with hammers and gongs on the dial are very very rare - and that is perhaps one of the coolest features of this watch.
A highly polarizing design, the Zeitwerk is a fascinating watch from a couple of years ago that is all mechanical, but has a digital time display with jumping hours and minutes. It also has a subsidiary seconds dial and power reserve indicator so that you know when to wind the watch. The addition of the new complication doesn't actually make the dial any more busy. The gong sits neatly around the face, and the hammers almost look decorative. There is a pusher under the crown that has a very simple function - to turn the striking mechanism on or off. You can tell by the position of the hammers.
It is hard to say whether not Lange originally designed the Zeitwerk to have a striking time complication, but it fits so neatly into the design of the watch - it is hard to imagine that it was a mere afterthought. Inside the watch is an in-house made Lange calibre L043.2 movement. It is manually wound with 36 hours of power reserve and a constant force escapement system for the jumping digits. The case is 44.2mm wide (maybe a bit larger than the standard Zeitwerk) and will come in 18k white gold with a silver and black dial, or as a limited edition (seen here and of 100 pieces) in platinum with a silver dial.
Really a marvelous piece that builds upon the reason why the Zeitwerk was so popular to begin with. Price is $90,800 in white gold and $111,400 in platinum.
Ariel Adams publishes the wrist watch reviews