Leica has announced a 250-piece limited edition M10 kit, designed by custom luxury car manufacturer Zagato. The M10 ‘Edition Zagato’ will come with a special Summilux-M 35mm f/1.4 lens that will feature a new integrated lens hood, and the body will feature a new design to incorporate a handgrip on the right side.
Technically the same as the production M10 bodies, the Zagato edition will use aluminum for its top deck, base plate, body shell and the control dials and knobs, as this is the material Zagato uses for its cars. The new body shell will make the camera 70g lighter than a stock M10, according to the company. A series of ribbed grooves will replace the usual leather around the body and the new handgrip will make the body easier to hold.
The Leica M10 ‘Edition Zagato’ will retail for £18,000 from selected Leica stores.
At the same time Leica has introduced a pair of mechanical watches made in a new part of the company’s factory in Wetzlar. The Leica L1 and L2 watches will be manufactured in the Ernst Leitz Werkstätten next to the camera plant, and have been designed with glass that resembles the front of a lens. The watches use a stainless steel case, but in true Leica style a limited edition L2 will be available in rose gold.
The fine arts of German craftsmanship meet Italian Design: Leica Camera AG presents the new, strictly limited Leica M10 ‘Edition Zagato’.
Wetzlar, 15 June 2018. With the Leica M10 ‘Edition Zagato’, Leica Camera AG presents a timelessly beautiful special edition that unites the best of German craftsmanship and Italian design. Comprising a camera and a Leica Summilux-M 35mm f/1.4 ASPH. lens, the set takes its name from Dr Andrea Zagato, owner of the design house and automotive styling specialists of the same name, who personally designed the limited edition, restricted to 250 pieces worldwide. This collaboration is now the second special edition created between the two long-established companies – 2015 saw the launch of a limited series of binoculars with a strikingly elegant design, the Leica Ultravid 8×32 ‘Edition Zagato’.
Founded a century ago, Zagato has been the creator of the most beautiful coachbuilt bodies in the history of automobile construction. The quintessential Italian brand is particularly well known for its innovative use of aluminium in automobile design and construction. Today, the company continues to create special, and traditionally strictly limited, editions of cars with unique styling in Milan, where the story of success began with the brand’s founder Ugo Zagato in 1919.
Both Leica and Zagato uphold a strong passion for aesthetics and precision in many respects. Both have intrinsic links, as well, to photography: “Photography plays an
essential role in our work. Without the possibilities offered by photography, we would never have had the invaluable pictures to be able to reconstruct vehicle models, and would not be able to present our work from the last decades in such an impressive way” emphasises owner Dr Andrea Zagato, who, together with his wife and Art Director, Marella Rivolta-Zagato, now heads the family company in its third generation.
The ‘Edition Zagato’ is the first special edition of the Leica M10 camera and offers extraordinary visual and tactile highlights. The top deck, the baseplate, the outer casing and the control elements of the camera are all manufactured from aluminium. This makes it 70g lighter than its serial production counterpart. Instead of the usual leather trim, the bodyshell of the camera is finished with fine grooves, which, together with details like the red shutter release button, lend the camera its unique look and feel. The integrated handgrip at the left of the body visually distinguishes the special edition from the serial production model of the M10 and makes it a delight to hold and handle. The M10 ‘Edition Zagato’ is the first Leica camera to have its own special serial number engraved on an aluminium badge on the base of the camera that is revealed only when the baseplate is opened.
The Leica Summilux-M 35mm F1.4 ASPH. lens in the special edition set has an integrated lens hood that can be pulled out and locked in place in a single motion – a new feature for a 35mm lens that simplifies its handling. The design of the focusing aid on the lens pays homage to a typical styling signature of Zagato automobile design, the double-bubble roofline of many Zagato models. The unmistakeable ‘Zagato’ logotype on the lens ring also indicates the role of the prominent design partner in this collaboration. In all other aspects, the technical specifications of the camera and lens in the Leica M10 ‘Edition Zagato’ set are identical to those of its serial production counterpart.
In addition to the camera and lens, the set also includes a carrying strap in red full- grain leather embossed with the Zagato logotype. This M-Camera is the first to feature rectangular strap lugs in the same design as those of the Zagato binoculars. The certificate of authenticity graces the packaging of the set in the form of an aluminium plate with an engraved serial number.
The Leica M10 ‘Edition Zagato’ is available from 15th June 2018 in selected Leica Stores at a RRP of $21,600 / £18,000 (including UK VAT). Additionally, a few pieces of the Leica Ultravid 8×32 ‘Edition Zagato’ limited edition binoculars are still available. In addition to the binoculars and a case in Zagato design, the set includes a matching carrying strap and a leather wrist strap.
The publication of the second volume of the coffee-table book trilogy, ‘Leica and Zagato – Europe Collectibles’, coincides with the launch of the Leica M10 ‘Edition Zagato’. The fascinating pictures show 33 Zagato models from the entire history of the brand in evocative European settings.
Ernst Leitz Werkstätten: Opening of the manufacture and presentation of the Leica Watch
Wetzlar, 13 June 2018. With the inauguration of the third phase of the Leitz Park – Leica Camera AG’s headquarters complex in Wetzlar, Germany – the “Ernst Leitz Werkstätten” commences operation and establishes a completely new and exclusive product line in the Leica Camera AG portfolio: mechanically highly complex and sophisticated watches made in small series. The Ernst Leitz Werkstätten is housed on the latest phase of Leitz Park and offers a fascinating insight into the elaborate production of ‘Made in Germany’ watches through the manufacture’s viewing windows. The premises include an assembly workshop, a consulting studio and a store.
Two models – the LEICA L1 and the LEICA L2 – will initially be available for the launch of the Leica Watch. Both variants draw their design inspiration from the creativity and precision, the hallmarks, of the world-famous brand from Wetzlar. Both models were designed by Professor Achim Heine who has overseen the design of many Leica Camera products over the years and who has extensive knowledge of the company’s design principles. The Leica signature look can be found in the countless design elements and features of the watches: the elegance of the hands and indexes, the shape of the finely-detailed, stainless-steel case, the special fluting on the crown and the cambered shape of the glass which is reminiscent of a camera lens.
Both models are operated by a mechanical movement with manual winding which has been newly developed and can be viewed through the glass case back made of robust sapphire crystal. For Leica, the ‘Made in Germany’ aspect is particularly important, hence the collaboration with Lehmann Präzision GmbH. The development, design and a large proportion of the components come from the manufacture situated in Germanys’ Black Forest and help the watches to achieve a very distinct vertical range of manufacture.
Design and technology complement each other perfectly in Leica watches: both the front glass and the back case cover are made of scratch-resistant sapphire crystal, with the front being anti-reflective on both sides, and each model has the patented push-piece crown with a corresponding status display on the dial. The combination with the zero setting of the second hand is another special feature – the crown is therefore not only aesthetically appealing, but also adds a useful function to the watches.
The design, which is reduced to the essentials and coupled with uncompromisingly high quality, make the LEICA L1 and LEICA L2 not only a functional instrument, but also a real statement piece.
Dr Andreas Kaufmann, Chairman of the Supervisory Board and majority shareholder of Leica Camera AG, on the Ernst Leitz Werkstätten: “I am very happy that this long- term project can now be finally presented. I believe that together with our partners we have succeeded in developing a ‘Made in Germany’ watch that is worthy of the name Leica and which represents the values of our premium brand extremely well!”.
Markus Lehmann, Managing Director of Lehmann Präzision GmbH, on the cooperation with Leica Camera: ‘We built precision machines for Leica years ago, independently of this project. It has of course been very interesting to work with
Leica in these two very different areas, although the watch project was and is a project very close to my heart. We knew in the run-up to this project that this cooperation will be fruitful, which helped to intensify our partnership significantly.’
The LEICA L1 and the LEICA L2 will be available in selected Leica Stores including the Leica Store Mayfair as well as at watch dealers worldwide from autumn 2018. The L2 model will also be available in a version with an 18 karat rose gold case. To mark the occasion of the Ernst Leitz Werkstätten commencing operation, limited special models of the two stainless steel versions with a red dial will be released.
About the Ernst Leitz Werkstätten
The Ernst Leitz Werkstätten, which derive their name from the founder of the Leitz Werke that opened in 1869, namely Ernst Leitz I, specialise in the design and manufacture of luxury products and are located in the newest part of the Leitz Park in Wetzlar, State of Hesse, Germany. As an independent division of Leica Camera AG, they were founded by Dr Andreas Kaufmann, Chairman of the Supervisory Board and majority shareholder of Leica Camera AG. Visitors can gain an insight into the work of the Ernst Leitz Werkstätten thanks to their large viewing windows. More information is available at www.ernst-leitz-werkstaetten.com.