The leading watch show is behind us, but some of the greatest novelties are still the major subject of discussion among watch aficionados. Swiss luxury brand Chopard made a highly notable appearance at the show. With a L.U.C 8HF watch, Chopard became one of a few watchmakers, capable to manufacture an ultra high-frequency movement.
First created in 2006, Chopard L.U.C Lunar One watch has been redesigned this year with new aesthetic details, interesting curves, increased readability and a great comfort. The first timepiece in the brand’s new collection, called a Classic Manufactum, also had its debut at the Baselworld 2012. Finally, there is a remarkable L.U.C XP Skeletec watch, with the Chopard’s first in-house skeleton mechanism.
Let us start with the unique watch that has become a part of the watchmaking history, bearing an exclusive L.U.C 01.06-L, the world’s first movement with a high-frequency escapement to be certified as a chronometer by the Swiss Official Chronometer Testing Institute (COSC). Oscillating at the frequency of 57,600 vibrations per hour (8 Hz), which is twice as higher as majority of mechanisms, this movement had taken several years of studies and development before it met high-end standards in terms of reliability, precision and stability.
The high-frequency escapement, entirely developed in Chopard Technologies and the horological research division of the Chopard Group, has another great quality, since it is compatible with barely all existing L.U.C movements. The new Caliber L.U.C 01.06-L is a self-winding mechanism with a great power-reserve of 60 hours, derived from a single barrel. Certain parts of the escapement are made of silicon, while bridges come adorned with the Côtes de Genève motifs.
The new Chopard L.U.C 8HF has a beautifully polished titanium case with ideal proportions. With the diameter of 42 mm and thickness of 11.47 mm, it perfectly fits the elegant style of a modern man. Besides the unusual position of a titanium crown at the 4 o’clock position, the case is distinguish by a titanium matt black case-back, comprising integrated lugs and magnified window that reveals the high-frequency escapement. A hand-sewn matte black alligator leather strap, with a cognac-colored alligator lining and a titanium pin buckle completes the striking elegance of the watch.
A silver-grained dial, protected with a glare-proofed sapphire crystal, features a black small seconds counter at the 6 o’clock position, rhodiumed hour and minute hands and a pointer-type date display at the 5:30 o’clock position. This high-end timepiece comes in the Limited Edition of 100 pieces.
Chopard L.U.C Lunar One Watch Offers a Perpetual Calendar with an Orbital Moon-Phase Display
A new interpretation of a Chopard L.U.C Lunar One watch comes with a 43mm case, crafted in 18 karat rose gold with beautifully polished surfaces that highlight the aesthetic perfection of the dial. A silver-toned and satin-brushed surface underscores remarkable elements, such as gold-toned “Dauphine” style hands, stylish Roman numerals – the 1960s inspired delicate golden appliqués, as well as a classic “rail-road” minute track that runs over the outer rim.
Amazing design is the perfect answer to the technological high-end inside the case. It is a Caliber L.U.C 96.13-L self-winding movement that provides great functionality and the superb power-reserve up to 70 hours. This chronometer-certified mechanism stamped with the Poinçon de Genève quality hallmark has a beautifully decorated micro-rotor and bridges adorned with Côtes de Genève motifs which are revealed through the glare-proofed sapphire crystal central opening on the case-back.
The sub-dial at the 6 o’clock position shows small seconds and the moon-phase, a perpetual calendar with a large double-aperture date window is displayed at the 12 o’clock position, days of the week and a 24-hour indication are positioned at the 9 o’clock position, while months and leap years are indicated via the sub-dial at the 3 o’clock position. The moon phases are indicated with such an amazing accuracy that the difference between a mechanical and an actual lunar cycle is just 57.2 seconds, which means one day in 122 years! Since it goes around the small seconds axis, the indicator got the name “orbital”.
An optimal readability is a new quality of the watch. Furthermore, a Chopard L.U.C Lunar One features completely redesigned lugs which, beside the aesthetic effect, provide great comfort. Finally, a semi-matt brown or matt black hand-sewn alligator leather strap with a cognac-colored alligator leather lining and an 18 karat rose gold pin buckle gives an additional touch of classic elegance.
Moon Phase Indicator in White Gold
A new L.U.C Lunar Twin watch is another great example of the brand’s ingenious skills in making highly complicated timepieces. A clearer and even more elegant design than the one of L.U.C Lunar One watch ensures remarkable readability, while its COSC certified inner-work provides a true spectacle and exceptional precision.
A proprietary self-winding L.U.C Calibre 96.21-L movement is equipped with Chopard’s patented Twin® technology (two sets of two stacked barrels) that provides the power reserve of 65 hours. This mechanism, which is visible through the transparent case-back, ensures amazing precision of the moon phase complication that, after 122 years of accurate working, will be incorrect one day.
A sunburst satin-brushed dial features the small seconds sub-dial at the 6 o’clock position, the moon-phase indicator is at the 1 o’clock, while the date window takes the 4 o’clock position. Rhodium Dauphine-type hands and stylish tone-on-tone applied Roman numerals complete this refine design.
The L.U.C Lunar Twin comes with the new aesthetic codes of the L.U.C collection. Its distinctively shaped 40 mm case, as well as polished and satin-brushed lugs is crafted in 18 karat white gold. The watch is available with a hand-sewn matt black alligator leather strap with a cognac-colored alligator lining and an 18 karat white gold pin buckle.
The New Collection was Born
A Classic Manufactum watch is the first model of the brand’s new Classic Collection. Inspired by the pocket watches of the Belle Epoque that built the reputation of the brand’s founder, Louis-Ulysse Chopard, this timepiece emits pure elegance with its every detail. A porcelain-type dial features shiny black Roman numerals, the small seconds sub-dial at the 6 o’clock position, with a characteristic “rail-road” style of the minute track, the date aperture at the 4 o’clock position, as well as slender gold-toned hands.
A stylish, 38 mm case, made of rose, yellow or white gold is available with a matte black alligator leather strap, with an 18k gold pin buckle in the matching material. Inside the case, there is Chopard’s Calibre 01.04-C, a new automatic movement, entirely developed in-house and produced in the workshops of Fleurier Ebauches.
Sophisticated and Elegant L.U.C XP Skeletec Watch
This amazing addition to the brand’s XP Collection houses a L.U.C Calibre 96.17-S self-winding movement which is the first skeletonized mechanism created by the Chopard Manufacture. Combining technical sophistication and refined elegance, this ultra-thin caliber (only 3.3 mm thick) oscillates at the frequency of 28,800 vibrations per hour (4Hz) and, thanks to the Twin® technology, it ensures a superb reserve of power up to 65 hours. Its main plate features Côtes de Genève motif, visible through the dial side, while some other skeletonized components, including gilded gear wheels, are revealed through both sides of the case.
Beside the open-worked dial, the readability is not decreased, thanks to the sunburst satin-brushed surface with applied hour markers, located between the bezel and the heart of the timepiece. An ultra-tin, 18 karat rose gold case has the diameter of 39.5 mm which seems like the ideal size for this sophisticated piece of art. It comes with a hand-sewn matt brown alligator strap, with an 18 karat rose gold pin buckle. A Chopard L.U.C XP Skeletec watch is produced in the Limited Series of 288 pieces.