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Design Spotlight: Leica Introduces Watches

If you’re a camera enthusiast, we’ve got news for you: Leica, one of the most sought after camera and lens makers in the world, has just announced a new line of luxury watches that will go on sale this fall. That’s right, Leica is now in the watchmaking business. While the camera company is no stranger to introducing new categories (see: headphones and bags), the two watch models–the L1 and the L2—are the first products from Ernst Leitz Werkstätten, a newly established division of the company solely focused on producing Leica watches. ↓

The L2 (right) features a day/night indicator and a rotating GMT bezel.

The made-in-Germany watches were designed by Achim Heine, who has overseen the development of multiple cameras and lenses since the late ’90s. Both models feature subtle nods to the brand's roots in photography, including the red rubies embedded in the crown, reminiscent of the iconic Leica red-dot logo, and the power indicator aperture on the dial, similar to the light meter on the Leica M3 camera. The watches are constructed with a stainless steel case (41mm in diameter and 14mm high), are water-resistant up to 165 feet, and have a 60-hour power reserve. The L2 also features a day/night indicator and a dual-time GMT function. ↓

Mechanical movements in the L1 and the L2, engineered by Lehmann Präzision GmbH.

Similar to Leica cameras, the watches come with a hefty price tag. The L1 model with be priced at approximately $11,800, while the L2 does not yet have a set price. Production is only 400 pieces of each model for the first year, though additional units will be released of limited-edition red-dial options for both styles and a special version of the L2 in an 18-karat rose gold case.

Here, images of the soon-to-be-introduced Leica L1 and L2 watches.

A ruby embedded in the crown is a nod to Leica's red-dot logo.