This Longines Legend Diver in Black (reference L3.718.104.22.168) is just like the other Legend Divers, part of the heritage collection. A collection that is only a small portion of Longines annual production of an estimated 1.3 million pieces. A huge number, but the number of different references from Longines is also quite impressive. The heritage collection is mainly aimed at enthusiasts and collectors, that’s one of the reasons why our Longines coverage is mainly based on those watches.If there’s one modern Longines that left me with a huge impression, it is the Longines Legend Diver. Preferably the version without date, but CEO Walter von Känel decided otherwise a few years ago and discontinued the non-date model. This year, Longines added some variation to the Legend Diver, with this all black version. Meet the Longines Legend Diver in Black.
The Longines Legend Diver in Black uses the Longines calibre L888.2 movement, which is based on the ETA A31.L01 movement. This movement ticks at 25,200vph, which is a rather unusual frequency, but Omega’s Co-Axial calibres also use this speed for example. The movement has a power reserve of 64 hours. This ETA A31.L01 is based on the well-known and much praised ETA 2892-A2 movement that you’re most probably familiar with. They slowed down the beat rate of this movement, and extended the power reserve. This ETA A31.L01 is exclusively manufactured and produced for Longines, to be used as their L888.2 movement. Since 1984 or so, Longines doesn’t produce movements in-house anymore and everything is being supplied by ETA (that just like Longines also belongs to Swatch Group). Although Longines is pretty clear (read our interview with CEO Walter von Känel here) that they don’t aim to become a manufacturer of movements again, but rather focus on being able to offer affordable (mechanical) watches, it is quite interesting that they do seem to shift towards the use of movements exclusively produced for them. Their introduction of the VHP movements and the chronometer certified Record collection also shows that Longines feels it has become more important for the consumer that a movement should be something special.