Germany’s iconic camera brand Leica has made a foray into the world of high-end watches by introducing two mechanical timepieces – the time-and-date L1 and the GMT-equipped L2. According to Dr. Andreas Kaufmann, Chairman of the Board of Leica Camera, the project started way back in 2012 when the brand first began exploring the idea of creating a watch. Leica consulted with different watchmakers, ranging from Hanhart to Chronoswiss to A. Lange & Söhne, and went through many integrations in the last few years. For the design of the watch, the company finally opted to work with Achim Heine, famous German product designer who has developed multiple cameras and other optical devices for Leica over the last two decades.
Both watches feature 41mm brushed stainless steel cases and come with quite a few design elements that are quintessentially Leica. The round ruby set into crown evokes the legendary red dot logo and the power reserve is styled similar to a gauge found on the Leicameter light meter made for the M3 rangefinder. The movements for both the watches are manufactured by Lehmann Präzision, a precision machinery company located in the Black Forest that makes both high-precision machinery (used in the watchmaking industry) and its own line of watches under the name Lehmann Schramberg. Pricing is yet to be announced, but will start under 10,000 Euros for the L1. Although, the watches are not limited editions, but production will be constrained to around 400 pieces total for the first year.