Why It Matters
The Vacheron Constantin Overseas Everest Limited Editions
WRITTEN BY THOM WILLIAMS
IMAGERY PROVIDED BY VACHERON CONSTANTIN
SEPTEMBER 21, 2021
For those who’ve had eyes on the luxury steel sports watch market over the last year or so, they’re likely to have noticed a new player in the ring. After years of living in the shadows, the Vacheron Constantin Overseas has finally become the new hot ticket. A watch once overlooked by many, the Overseas has always been a competitive equal to the Patek Philippe Nautilus and Audemars Piguet Royal Oak, and with the aforementioned duo now near impossible to acquire many collectors are starting to turn towards the third player of watchmaking’s holy trinity. What plays in Vacheron’s favor is that it took very little for demand to overpower supply. The low-volume producer’s supply of standard collection Overseas models were snapped up in no time, leading to the start of waitlists at Vacheron Constantin boutiques and retailers around the globe.
One of the early trigger points for the popularity surfaced at the end of 2019, as Vacheron Constantin partnered with American explorer, photographer, and mountaineer Cory Richards, having supplied Cory a prototype Overseas Dual Time for his attempted Everest ascent. Said prototype smashed through its high auction estimate when it sold at the December 2019 Phillips Game Changers auction for north of $100,000. Seeing this as a sign of the market, Vacheron got to work on a limited edition production version of the watch that launched this week alongside a chronograph variant, each limited to 150 pieces. At a glance, the new references seem quite true to the original prototype, though there are a few noteworthy changes.
Looking at the Dual Time reference first, as it’s the closest sibling to the Cory Richards, its dial, hands, and case dimensions are all true to the original. Measuring 41mm across, its dial features a textured grey/blue finish with bright orange hands for its second time zone and AM/PM indicator. Where the case changes is in materials. Where the original version was crafted out of titanium with a tantalum bezel, the new production model opts for a stainless steel case and titanium bezel. This combination still creates a sort of two-tone look that is quite well matched to its dial color. Also matching the original prototype, the 22k solid gold winding rotor is engraved with an image of Mount Everest, based off of one of the photos by Cory himself.
In the case of the Chronograph, the color palette and case materials are the same as the Dual Time, though there are some case construction changes in the Chronograph when compared to its production counterparts. Most notably, the chronograph pushers protrude much less from the case flanks, but it’s also worth noting that the crown and pusher guards are also made of titanium, contributing to the two-tone look we mentioned.
While these two new models were just announced to the market, those pining for a chance to get their hands on one are quite likely out of luck. According to a handful of unnamed sources, it seems most if not all of these references have already been allocated to Vacheron Constantin collectors. If you’re even remotely considering it, you’d be best to call your local Vacheron dealer in a hurry. The asking price? $37,000 for the chronograph, and $31,300 for the Dual Time.