Junghans, at one time primarily known for its quartz, radio controlled, or solar watches, has made a return to mechanical watches in a big way. Its new slogan is back to the roots and they’re not kidding either, it’s a complete return to the older, classic look where three handed watches now set the tone. Today, the ever young appearance of the vintage style from Max Bill and the Meister collection are important pillars in this brand’s portfolio.
Made in Germany is now synonymous with extraordinary elegance and cutting-edge Bauhaus styles and can hold its own against its Swiss counterparts. In comparison with the recent heritage collections of other producers, the new models energetically lean towards the vintage character of its predecessors. It’s awesome that the brand feels so strongly about staying true to its traditions and it’s definitely reflected in their slick mid-century designed timepieces.
Functional, pragmatic, and timeless. The visuals of Max Bill have been revived by Junghans and it’s almost more than just a “mere” collection. It’s a sub-brand and also an important pillar of the product identity at Junghans. The watches optics are very clean with their unmistakable Bauhaus styles, where opulence and overloaded designs give way to plainer forms and proportions.
The Meister collection consists of a lineup of high-grade watches. First launched in 1936, the Meister design world is defined by the spirit of days long since past. Just as in the Max Bill collection, understatement and elegance are the highest premise.
This collection, named after the company’s founder Erhard Junghans, contains the sum total of their creativity. It reverts the tone back to elegance and timelessness. Similar to the Max Bill series, the Erhard Junghans collection also was formed as a sub brand with its own logo. Its high-end models Tempus and Creator, are offered in gold and steel variants.
Junghans made a return to mechanical watches, roughly ? of its total products, after the era of the quartz, radio and solar wristwatches had ended. Instead of its own manufactory made movements, e.g. the famous gooseneck fine adjustment, It has placed its faith in tried and test movements from ETA. After all the turbulent years, what’s the rush anyways?
With over 3,000 employees and yearly sales of over 3 million watches, Junghans was the biggest manufacturer of watches in the world at the beginning of the 20th century. A lot has changed in the watch industry since then. However, there’s still more than 100 employees and continuing to grow.
While most of the products available are mechanical, there are also radio and solar watches on board and this is a field in which Junghans is unquestionably a trailblazer. In 1990, it presented the first worldwide radio watch. It’s a quartz timepiece that one time during the day receives a radio signal to sync up automatically with the official time. Radio watches also stay steadily by a rate variation in the lower tenths of a second range.
In 1972, Junghans was the official timekeeper for 195 competitions at the Olympic Games in Munich. On this occasion, a collection of chronographs was launched with the befitting name of Olympic. It’s a hotly sought after timepiece by collectors.
The famous Bauhaus hour marker at the 4 o’clock position is the standout feature of Max Bill designs. However, there are a lot of similar ones from the 50s and 60s , but they can’t be attributed to the Swiss genius.
1861: Junghans is founded in Schramberg in the Black Forest.
1936: The Meister Series is incorporated into its portfolio.
1961/1962: Designer Max Bill develops several watch models for Junghans, which are first produced in the 1960’s.
1970: Junghans presents the first German quartz watch, the Astro Quartz.
1972: Junghans becomes the official timekeeper of the Summer Olympic Games in Munich. On this occasion, the Olympic chronograph is launched.