Watches: Franc Vila FVn N°19 Neo Alta Patriot Collection (+live pics)

By Thierry Ané on April 8, 2014

Launched in 2013, the “Neo Alta” collection represents the third evolution of the now famous “Esprit unique” case: streamlined, with a neo-classic design, it retains all the aesthetic uniqueness of Franc Vila’s timepieces while enjoying more refined lines to appeal to a larger audience. Featuring time-only models with small seconds, the Neo Alta collection also represents an affordable entry into the world of Mr. Vila.

For its introduction, the “Neo Alta” was unveiled in two versions, one in steel and the other in black steel, both featuring a carbon fibre dial with red accents. Limited to 88 pieces per version, these watches were certainly great-looking but not striking enough to catch everybody’s attention and showcase how versatile and fun this FVn N°19 can be.

Maybe faced with a similar challenge after the launch of its Admiral’s Cup AC-One 45 Chronograph model, Corum released a series of limited editions dedicated to the American continent. Some of you might remember my article about this Admiral’s Cup AC-One 45 Americas CollectionWatches: Corum Admiral’s Cup AC-One 45 Chronograph Americas, but if you don’t, I really encourage you to check it out as the watches are really stunning.

This year, Franc Vila followed a similar road and unveiled the colourful Neo Alta Patriot Collection with models in tribute to various countries such as Argentina, Brazil, Guatemala, Mexico, Russia, the United States (steel or black PVD Steel), Venezuela

They all use the same 55 x 42 mm Neo Alta case in a black DieHard Extreme Steel version (apart from the United States that are entitled to a second version in DieHard Extreme Steel), a carbon fibre dial and a steel folding buckle. What makes each model unique is the colour of the textile strap and its stitches, the SuperLuminova on the hours and minutes hands or the hour markers. The seconds disc at 6 o’clock also provides a large space for customisation and is adorned with a reminder of each country’s flag.

We took live pictures of all the versions that were available at Baselworld and I have included all I have in this article. I am not sure whether our pictures do justice to these watches but I can tell you that they all look absolutely stunning and I really wanted to buy them all on the spot!

Each model is limited to 18 pieces and according to what they told me, they are not restricted to their respective markets (although they will have a priority) and they retail for CHF 13,300 for all the black versions and CHF 11,700 for the steel model. One piece of advice if you are interested: do not wait to contact your usual retailer to order the version(s) of your choice as I am sure they will sell out very fast!

Compositions of the Latin America versions

The model for Brazil

The model for Guatemala

The model for Argentina

The model for Mexico

The versions for Russia and the United States side-by-side

One of the models for the United States

The model for Russia