It has been almost 15 years since Longines dropped the Legend Diver revival at Baselworld – a watch that paved the way for heritage reissues across the industry. In 2012, five years after its launch Longines distressed purists by introducing a date window, followed by different case sizes, ladies models, and then a stealth all-black version. In 2020 – alongside the new Spirit Collection – the winged-hourglass brand applied everything they’d learned from a decade of heavy hitter heritage models to launch the dateless Longines Legend Diver Bronze.
For what was already a sophisticated dive watch, the introduction of a bronze case shifts the Legend Diver into an entirely new realm, retaining the charm and pedigree of its forefather but introducing the romance of patina for the first time. The revealing characteristics of bronze, unique to the journey of each wearer, suits the Legend Diver like no other. While competing brands have, seemingly, added a Bronze case to their collection in an effort to change things up, the Longines Legend Diver Bronze owns the storied material and, while still a sports watch, adds an element of elegance previously unseen in the diver space.
Complementing the 42mm golden-brown hue of the bronze case is a fabulous deep green gradient dial – like a British Racing Green, but darker and more formal. The contrasting colours of the case, dial, and rich brown leather strap, secured with bronze clasp, unite for an extremely pleasing roll of the wrist. Unfortunately for me, the same long, slender lugs the model has become known for still secure the Longines Legend Diver Bronze, and while they are cohesive in design, they’re a touch too long for some, causing the watch to sit a little unnaturally on the wrist – as it does on mine.
It’s a damn shame because I’ve lusted over the Legend Diver since the first day I saw it – it’s one of the first watches I ever photographed in this job. There’s something about an interior rotating bezel (operated by the bezel at 2 o’clock) that sings to me – a perfect execution of function and aesthetics.
Beneath the 300m water-resistant titanium case back, featuring is the workhorse ETA L888.5 calibre movement, made exclusively in-house for Longines, with an anti-magnetic silicon balance spring and 64 hours power reserve. This tried-and-tested calibre – based on the classic ETA 2892 – echoes the Longines Legend Diver Bronze’s values of reliability, modernity, and elegance.
Clearly, the new evolution of the Longines Legend Diver Bronze, sans date, has succeeded in collating almost 15 years of heritage while carving its own path with a vision unmatched. Wear it on leather for an understated, handsome, and versatile daily or swap in the accompanying green nato and take it on an adventure, then remark on it years later as you admire the unique aging of your pride and joy.