12 Best Montblanc Men Watches

12 best montblanc men watches

Old timers might insist that the only product category Montblanc is known for is pens. While that may be true for a Baby Boomer or millennial who is out of touch, the truth is quite the contrary. After a wise acquisition of Minerva, Montblanc had access to almost 150 years of watchmaking expertise. Montblanc was once a high-end stationery and leather products firm.

And whether you like them or not, Montblanc men’s watches compete successfully with major brands like Jaeger-LeCoultre, IWC Schaffhausen, and even Rolex. If you’re not convinced that your Day Date 40 will be resold, you could think twice before spending over $30,000 and being on a waiting list for a Rolex substitute.

Therefore, the short answer is that you will be dissatisfied if you came here to have your misgivings about Montblanc as a watchmaker confirmed. One may find a dozen sporty, casual, conceptual, and complex timepieces in Montblanc’s range at almost incomparable costs.

But first, I’ll get right into it with a brief account of how a creator of fountain pens came to be a neglected horologist.

MONTBLANC WATCHES: HOW IT STARTED

The history of Montblanc began in Berlin, Germany, in 1906, when August Eberstein created a variety of fountain pens. The German company, which has its current headquarters in Hamburg, is a part of the Swiss conglomerate Richemont Group, which also owns companies like Cartier and Baume & Mercier. I’ll omit the superfluous information though and concentrate on MB’s background as a watchmaker.

It’s interesting to note that Montblanc very recently entered the watch industry in 1997 after purchasing Minerva. Through Montblanc watches, the skills and craftsmanship of the Victorian-era Swiss watchmaker are still alive today. In addition to being reputable military watchmakers, they had previously served as the official timekeepers of the Olympic Ski Events and were a top supplier of handcrafted movements.

Therefore, consider the Institut Minerva de Recherche en Haute Horlogerie and the Minerva history while considering Montblanc as a watchmaker. The latter is a facility for doing research on cutting-edge technology and “preserving and cultivating” dated precision timekeeping methods.

In terms of entry-level and possibly mid-level luxury watch companies, Montblanc is a force to be reckoned with today. Therefore, they are not pushovers when it comes to watchmaking, regardless of whether you imagine a pen manufacturer when you hear the name.

WHAT’S THE STATUS OF MONTBLANC WATCHES TODAY?

What I previously said is still true; Montblanc is more than just a well-known pen manufacturer. And anyone who believes differently is either prejudiced, ignorant, or resourceful enough to easily buy more expensive luxury.

Yes, MB can stand out from the competition if you stay with their entry-level models. However, as you move up, between $2000 and $15,000, you start to notice the excellent level of craftsmanship, which is still a reasonable price to pay.

To support Montblanc’s reputation as a tough watchmaker, I’ll emphasise craftsmanship. The dressy variants of the German luxury brand’s timepieces, in particular, make some well-known brands seem pricey. They have in-house movements (mainly Selita-based), a signature Sfumato leather production process, and the finishing of a master artisan.

The Vasco da Gama Moonphase and Star Legacy Orbis Terrarum are two great timepieces that could compete with any watch, including those made by the Holy Trinity. In addition to being able to be compared side by side for engineering prowess, Montblanc watches provide a significant return on investment.

For instance, the JLC Master Calendar costs almost half as much as the Montblanc Heritage Chronometrie Vasco Da Gama Moonphase in red gold, at about $13,000. Additionally, they are comparable in terms of design, craftsmanship, and use. The JLC’s only competitive advantage is improved resale value due to stronger brand recognition.

THE BEST MONTBLANC WATCHES

Here are some of the top men’s Montblanc watch models now that we know they are both high-quality and reasonably priced.

1. Montblanc 1858 Iced Sea Automatic (Ref. MB129371)

The Mer de Glace (“Sea of Ice”), a sizable glacier in the Mont-Blanc Massif, serves as the inspiration for this watch, which is Montblanc’s first diving timepiece. Having a Diver’s watch with a fun tale is interesting. Even better, it was expertly crafted with great care for every last detail.

In honour of the model names Iced Sea and Merce de Sea, its glacial design is the most noticeable aspect. Gratte Boise, an antiquated method, is used to create this glacial appearance. Additionally, the case back and crown have creative engraving. It serves as a good illustration of Montblanc’s desire to preserve traditional watchmaking techniques while using cutting-edge technology.

A 40mm stainless steel diving watch that can withstand abuse for many years is called the Iced Sea. The dial meets and exceeds diving standards for water resistance with a ceramic unidirectional rotating bezel and 300 metres.

2. Montblanc Star Legacy Nicolas Rieussec Chronograph (Ref. MB126098)

You have never seen a 43mm chronograph like this Montblanc. Given the level of engineering and craftsmanship that went into it, it is a work of art that is absurdly inexpensive. Additionally, it upholds Montblanc’s tradition of safeguarding the priceless history of watchmaking.

As you could have guessed from the name, it is a tribute to Nicolas Rieussec, the official watchmaker to King Phillipe and the Frenchman who invented the inking chronograph in 1821.

What exactly is an inking chronograph, you ask? It is only a chronograph that inks the dial with the amount of time that has passed. The calibre MB R200 automatic chronograph movement of this Star Legacy is as well-engineered and has a power reserve of 72 hours. It contains counters with moving discs that create a 3D effect and a column wheel.

Additionally, the blue dial boasts a striking guilloche pattern that catches the light and draws attention. Its elegant appearance as a dress watch is then completed by the addition of a Sfumato alligator strap. The Star Legacy Nicolas Rieussec is a top option for men if they want a stylish alternative to a Montblanc or Jaeger-LeCouture timepiece or a statement timepiece.

3. Montblanc Heritage Automatic Day & Date (Ref. MB119947)

Any memories of “the President”? The Heritage Automatic Day & Date rivals the renowned Day Date watch made famous by Rolex, which goes by this moniker. However, the Heritage has a distinctive look and is not only a low-quality knockoff. Actually, it pays homage to the iconic dress timepieces made by Minerva in the 1940s and 1950s.

The casing maintains the historical design of a teethed crown and smooth round frame in a 39mm size. This watch will finish a man’s formal outfit thanks to its highly polished finish and silvery white face.

Additionally, the day and date displays and minute graduation inside the case give this watch a sophisticated, polished, yet classy appearance. I like how the blue syringe seconds hand reaches the five-minute graduation, to be more specific.

It has a distinctive appearance and is comfortable to wear when paired with a grey Sfumato alligator leather strap. It also has a Minerva Manufacture” engraved on a house calibre that is hidden under the thick case back.

4. Montblanc Tradition Automatic Date (Ref. MB127770)

Another masterpiece from Montblanc for guys seeking occasion-appropriate casual luxury and style. It has a traditional round casing made of stainless steel and the recognisable Montblanc straight lugs that I’ve grown to appreciate. It sports a 40mm case with a distinctive 5-link stainless steel bracelet that radiates a strong and genuine vibe.

The dial is stunning. A date window is located at the third hour, and the dial is a mixture of matching silver-white with Roman numeral hour markers and batons. It has an internal bezel, just like the Heritage Day Date, but this time it has a 15-minute graduation and a railway minute pattern for the indexes. You also can’t go wrong with the ultra-slim hands softening the dial and bracelet’s brash image.

This Tradition Automatic uses a 38-hour reserve in-house MB 24.17 automatic calibre. The MB competes favourably with models from renowned manufacturers like the Oris Artelier Automatic, Tissot Tradition Automatic, and even the Longines Master L2.357.4.08.6.

Roman numerals on the dial may also give it a dressier edge, according to some. Additionally, it is a somewhat more affordable timepiece with a leather version if you prefer a more professional look. Or, if you’re more reserved, the 36mm casing.

But when you look at the diamond indices and colour possibilities, the $2500 Longines Master is alluring. Overall, the Montblanc Traditional Automatic is an excellent luxury timepiece that any true watch enthusiast can appreciate for its design, craftsmanship, and price.

5. Montblanc 1858 Geosphere (Ref. MB119286)

You would have known Montblanc is a fan of adventurous watches if you had looked at the MB Vasco Da Gama from previously. The kind of fountain pen that would be difficult for a regular pen maker to perfect in design, let alone manufacture. However, the Montblanc team created the 1858 Geosphere as a tribute to climbers who took on the Seven Summit Challenge, which involved ascending the highest summits on each of the seven continents.

Given that the name of the company, Montblanc, meaning “massif” or “principal mountain mass,” this watch is appropriate for the company’s history. It came as no surprise that special care was taken with the details and that it was produced to commemorate Minerva’s 160th birthday.

Two globes with red dots indicating the locations of each summit across the world are displayed on the 1858 Geosphere dial. Additionally, it has a second time zone at 9 o’clock and a ceramic bezel with knurling that serves as a compass. Think of it as a world timer.

The building is equally stunning. It has a 42mm stainless steel case, a black dial, and comfortable aged Sfumato calf leather. For maximum wearability, the 1858 Geosphere is also offered with Nato and Bund straps.

6. Montblanc Heritage GMT (Ref. MB119950)

Montblanc offers travellers a timepiece to slay on the road, making it by far the dressiest GMT watch you’ll come across. I’m a simple man at heart, while loving the attention that intricate timepieces like GMTs get. With this straightforward design, the MB Heritage GMT checks all the appropriate boxes.

Do not be deceived by the unusually circular case’s straight lugs. It is robust and functions perfectly without a bezel. With three separate layers of polish, the salmon dial has a double entendre appeal that is both vintage and eye-catching.

The dial is attractive, readable, and demonstrates careful craftsmanship thanks to the wood grain finish for the hands (inner layer), guilloche pattern for the 12-hour marker (centre), and clear finish for the minute and 24-hour marker (outer ring).

This Montblanc 40mm two-timezone watch has a 42-hour power reserve automatic MB24.50 calibre that is water-resistant to 50 metres. Talk about a strong, yet basic, GMT watch at a reasonable price.

7. Montblanc 1858 Automatic 24H (Ref. MB126007)

You might tell by looking at this “work of art” that MB has dedicated the “1858” line to producing intricate timepieces. It is only intended for aficionados who want to add a conceptual one-handed watch to their collection of collectibles. It’s a lovely watch with an 1858 theme that has a stainless steel case and a lovely bronze bezel that has patina.

Even with wear, the bezel continues to age well as the patina develops and gives it the desired look of the 19th century. However, this watch’s 19th-century history is not entirely limited to that. The Automatic 24h is unique in that it is also impossible for it to maintain precise timekeeping.

A 24-hour marker with a black map background and even 2-24 gradations is on the lovely compass-like dial. Surprisingly, the outer bezel of the watch has compass indicators, though I’m not sure how accurate they are. The only way to tell the time, even if it is only accurate to within 15 minutes, is with the bright red hand pointing to the rail lines.

However, I enjoy the adventurous nature of it; the day begins in the west at the top of the 12th hour, and ends in the east at the bottom of the 24th hour.

The only way to accurately tell the time is to count the four minutes that make up an hour, which limits your accuracy to 15-minute intervals on the hour. Fun fact: At night, the dial illuminates to depict the Meridian lines and a map of the Northern Hemisphere.

The much-heralded vintage cloth strap from Julien Faure, a strap maker who still employs the same ancient looms his forefathers did 150 years ago, is employed by Montblanc to encircle the bronze case.

Even though this is one of MB’s innovative clocks, I believe the price is excessive given the idea of feeling like you are on an alpine adventure and the imprecise timekeeping era. But there’s no denying that it’s the ideal watch to pass down through the generations.

8. Montblanc Star Legacy Automatic Date (Ref. MB118517)

We’re back in the here and now with another gorgeous dress watch from Montblanc, the Star Legacy Date 39. Thanks to its simple Arabic Breguet numerals and uncomplicated slate grey dial, this 39mm stainless steel timepiece is a welcome change from the intricate 1858 Automatic 24h.

The guilloche designs on the dial appear clean at first glance, but a closer inspection reveals the attention to detail of a master craftsman. It’s the kind of watch face that always manages to catch the interest of friends and coworkers. It’s elegant and well-known, but different from anything else you’ll see.

A sfumato alligator leather strap from MB completes its ultimate formal appeal. If you’re not familiar with the sfumato technique, it’s a style used in paintings from Leonardo Da Vinci’s time that, in this case, gives the leather strap a smoky, faded, and fashionable aspect similar to that of expensive wine. The Star Legacy 39mm is unquestionably a timepiece that a businessman or sophisticated professional should add to their collection of dress watches.

9. Montblanc 1858 Automatic Date 0 Oxygen The 8000 (Ref. MB130984)

I introduce the Date 0 Oxygen in support of Montblanc’s meticulous assistance for mountaineers for obvious reasons. This athletic watch was created by artisans and engineers to be “devoid of oxygen” and airtight to avoid fogging at high altitudes. Not to mention a magnificent dial to withstand chilly evenings in the wilderness or rock daily.

The 8000 has a modern and vintage appearance thanks to Montblanc’s sfumato technique finishing on the black glacier-patterned dial. A beautiful work of art, the watch face. The 8000 sports an easy-to-read dial with large-font Arabic numerals and illuminated cardinal points on the bezel in addition to the iced-out background.

In contrast to the straight lugs of a conventional Montblanc, it has boxy lugs that are athletic and a black bezel. But since it has leaf hour hands, don’t dismiss it as a dress watch just yet. Additionally, it has a bracelet that can be switched out for a leather strap.

The robust MB21.17 that we’ve seen in the other Montblanc models powers the Date 0 Oxygen 8000. The “Spirit of Explorations” etching is hidden within the closed case back as a tribute to the daring explorers who wore this watch. Just keep in mind that although it is 0 Oxygen, it is only 100 metres water resistant.

10. Montblanc Star Legacy Full Calendar (Ref MB119955)

One of the German luxury brand’s trickier versions is the Montblanc Star Legacy Full Calendar. However, it continues to produce straightforward, rounded, dressy timepieces in a tribute to Minerva’s past from the 19th century.

As you can undoubtedly guess, the Star Legacy uses the MB 29.12 calibre and features day, date, month, and hour in addition to a calendar function or moon phase. Given that they have some stylistic similarities, I can’t help but fantasise about how it compares to heavyweights like the Breguet Classique Calendrier 7337 and Blancpain Quantieme Complet. The Star Legacy boasts a round pocket watch form in addition to the moon phase mechanism, like top competitors, and its Minerva ancestry.

Despite having a background that appears to be plain white, the dial is a wonderful example of craftsmanship. But the skillful craftsmen at Le Locle worked some magic by front and centre piercing the Montblanc exploding star guilloche. The days of the week, as well as the day and month window, are encompassed by the Montblanc emblem.

The Star Legacy also has a clean and readable profile thanks to the silvery-white dial’s dotted minute markers and black Roman numerals. Even a novice in horology may understand the notion because of how well the red crescent moon and blue hour and minute hands contrast.

You may wear this lovely watch both casually and formally by pairing it with a 42mm polished stainless steel case and Sfumato alligator leather. The Star Legacy calendar is one of the more expensive models, but considering its cost, it represents a fantastic value in terms of both design and usability.

11. Montblanc 1858 Automatic Chronograph (Ref. MB117836)

As the Submariner or Datejust are to Rolex, the 1858 collection must be to Montblanc. Before you start swinging your axes, keep in mind that this is a generalisation based on the sheer volume of great models, not on popularity. The Automatic Chronograph is a timeless beauty that offers simplicity, modern style, and functionality. And the magnetic allure comes from nothing excessive.

The 42mm stainless steel device has a smooth finish in addition to the normal round and polished case that we have come to anticipate from Montblanc watches. When you look at the dial, you’ll notice the leaf hands, markers, and sub counters on the black background, which have a worn yet beautiful old-school style.

And MB adds bi-pushers to the Automatic Chronograph for a fresh design across the board. Its MB25.11 calibre, which has a 48-hour power reserve and 27 jewels, is another exception from the norm.

The calf leather strap is what appeals to me, even if it is widespread in the world of luxury watches nowadays. The watch has a bold and adaptable style that would be appropriate for a house or beach party, dinner, or running errands thanks to its raw appearance and striking contrast of the cognac strap.

12. Montblanc Heritage Perpetual Calendar (Ref. MB119925)

Last but not least is the most recent iteration of what was once the market’s most reasonably priced luxury perpetual calendar watch. Although this new improvement is not particularly inexpensive, it has a larger case, a dial with more harmony and less disarray, and a more robust movement.

The “new manufacture” 29 calibre MB29.22, as described by Montblanc, powers the Heritage Perpetual Calendar. For those who are unfamiliar, a perpetual calendar is simply a calendar that can be changed to accurately read the days of the week in the past or the future. So, with a 48-hour power source, the MB29.22 reliably reads hours, days, months, leap years, and moon phases.

The engineering skill used to portray them on the silvery white dial in a tasteful manner, not the features themselves, is what makes the watch intriguing. The dial of the Star Legacy features Montblanc’s distinctive multi-level textured treatment, which, despite its simplicity, radiates extraordinary attention to detail and increases the legibility of the functions. This serves as a reminder of the Heritage Perpetual calendar’s excellent inclusion of a second timezone feature.

Additionally, the watch is housed in a slim 12mm stainless steel case because of the MB29.22’s effective engineering. It was a brilliant idea to pair the Heritage Perpetual Calendar with Montblanc’s iconic sfumato leather strap.

MONTBLANC WATCHES: THE BRAND FOR CLASSIC MEN

The best men’s luxury watch company for traditional males and even contemporary working women is Montblanc. I don’t say this because they produce excellent watches, but more because it’s a possibility to stick with one company for your high-end accessories.

For me, having a brand I can rely on to provide quality, flavour, and a reasonable price for a variety of goods is enjoyable. It relieves me of the burden of beginning a new customer experience in which I would have to window shop to find a fit.

And Montblanc serves a certain market of those looking for upscale and fashionable pens, briefcases, wristbands, wallets, and watches for the conventional guy. In general, the German luxury watchmaker creates clocks that both novices and ardent enthusiasts who respect simplicity, style, and affordable prices would enjoy.

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