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To celebrate 175 years of watchmaking in Glashütte, Germany, Nomos has released a trio of limited edition versions of the Ludwig, each with “enamel-white” dials and other flourishes that make them unique. The Ludwig is perhaps too often the forgotten Nomos, being the only watch in their catalog featuring Roman numerals on the dial. But those Roman numerals give it a refined and traditional quality that makes it a logical choice to celebrate an anniversary like this. Glashütte watchmaking, after all, is nothing if not steeped in tradition, even if Nomos as a brand has a tendency to go their own way and wink a bit at watchmaking history.
Ludwig Neomatik 175 Years Limited Editions
- Case Material: Stainless steel
- Dial: White
- Dimensions: 35mm, 39mm, 41mm
- Crystal: Sapphire
- Water Resistance: 3 ATM
- Crown: Push/pull
- Movement: Alpha, DUW 3001, DUW 60101
- Strap/bracelet: Leather strap
- Price: 35mm: $2,260, Ludwig neomatik 39: $3,800, Ludwig neomatik 41 date: $4,200
- Reference Number: 205.S2, 250.S1, 261.S1
- Expected Release: Available now
The simplest of the three Ludwigs is the 35mm reference 205.S2. This watch features the hand wound Alpha caliber, plus the aforementioned white dial common to this series, and heat blued leaf hands that distinguish it from the mainline Ludwig. The movement has also been chronometer certified, and is of course visible through the transparent caseback, where you’ll find an engraving signifying the anniversary nature of this limited edition. This version is the most classic of the three, by far, sized as it is with the traditional 35mm diameter that Nomos cut their teeth with when the brand got its start.
Next up is the Ludwig Neomatik 39, reference 250.S1. This Ludwig is slightly larger and is fitted with the Nomos caliber DUW 3001. This is their in-house, automatic movement, and measures just 3.2mm in height, allowing for automatic watches with the thin profile of classic manually wound dress watches. While 39mm in this dial and case configuration wears large for a traditional dress watch, it remains a versatile modern size, and with this particular movement is a compelling daily wear option.
Lastly, in what in my opinion is the most interesting of the three limited Ludwigs, we have reference 261.S1, a 41mm Neomatik tagged variant, with a date. What makes this watch special is that the date at 3:00 is read in Roman numerals, just like the time telling numerals around the perimeter of the dial. While I’m guessing at some point in watchmaking history there has been another Roman numeral date wheel, I can’t think of one off the top of my head – it’s quite unusual, if not completely unique. This, to me, is Nomos at their most playful. An oversized dress watch with all the trappings of historical watchmaking, combined with a feature that is essentially a visible joke. Roman numerals, in 2020, aren’t exactly a practical choice, even as hour indicators. Putting them on the date wheel feels like commentary in a way, and I personally enjoy it quite a bit.
It seems like others enjoy it as well, as the stock of the 261.S1 (and the 205.S2) that was allocated to the Nomos website has sold out, although it’s possible they still might be available through authorized dealers. Each of the three Ludwigs seen here are limited to just 175 examples each (the Neomatik 39 variant is still available directly through Nomos at the time of this writing).
Nomos has made something of a signature of their silver colored dials, so the enamel-white seen here is a change of pace and gives these somewhat familiar looking watches a markedly different look. The contrast between the blue hands and the stark white dial is particularly striking, and is meant to recall early pocket watch design.
Prices for the limited Ludwigs start at $2,260 for the 35mm hand wound variant, and move up to $3,800 and $4,200 for the Neomatik and Neomatik Date versions, respectively. Nomos