· watchuseek.com Managing Editor
This year Chopard is celebrating its 20-year anniversary. Even though it is a celebration, the mood is cautious and message is clear to make watches with manufacture movement more affordable. This year there are two annual editions of Mille Miglia with manufacture movement. There are four new watches in the LUC series, and surprisingly one of the perpetual calendar in stainless steel.
Mille Miglia 2016 XL Race Edition is inspired by the design codes of the cars that took part in the historical race between 1927 and 1940. The 46 mm case makes it the largest of the Mille Miglia wrist chronographs created by Chopard. The bright red sweep-seconds hand clearly stands out. The satin-brushed dial displays snailed anthracite (a decoration of compact spirals on a dial, created using a rose engine) and black counters reminiscent of car dashboards. The "Rossa Corsa" red arrow-shaped Mille Miglia logo appears both at 12 o'clock on the dial and around the rim of the exhibition case-back.
The Mile Miglia 2016 XL is powered by a new automatic Chopard calibre 03.05-C movement, equipped with a column wheel chronograph complication. It has a 60-hour of power reserve.
Ref. 168580-3001 - in stainless steel - 1,000-piece limited edition - price is $15,000.
The Mille Miglia GTS Automatic Speed black comes in a 43 mm-diameter case made of stainless steel and DLC (Diamond-Like Carbon) treatment, topped by a bezel with a graduated black aluminum insert. The comfortable integrated black rubber strap is inspired by 1960s Dunlop racing tires and it comes with a DLC-coated stainless steel folding clasp.
The GTS Automatic is powered by in-house Chopard calibre 01.01-M which is COSC certified and has 60-hour power reserve. Ref. 168565-3002 is limited edition of 1,000 and price is $6,900.
L.U.C 1860 was launched 20 years ago by Chopard. L.U.C. XPS 1860 offers a new take on this historical watch. The case is 40 mm and a slim 7.2mm with short, ergonomic lugs which fits well even on small wrists. The case comes in either 18-carat rose gold or stainless steel. The rose gold version has a hand-guilloché motif in the center of the dial, and the stainless steel version has a sunburst satin-brushed pattern on the center of the dial.
The watch is powered by Chopard's automatic calibre 96.01-L with a 22-carat gold micro-rotor and a 65-hour power reserve, well beyond the usual standards for ultra-thin watches. The movement is COSC certified. It has a date complication at 6'o clock.
The rose gold version is celebrating the 20-year anniversary and hence comes in a limited edition of 250 pieces. Retail price is $22,000. The stainless steel edition is normal production series and is priced around $9,000.
The L.U.C Perpetual Chrono is a hand-wound perpetual calendar chronograph based on Chopard calibre 3.10-L. Calibre 03.10-L is built around a column wheel that controls all chronograph operations including the flyback function. The zero-reset system for the counters and the central sweep seconds hand is handled by progressive-contact hammers guaranteeing optimal precision. It ensures smooth yet firm activation of the timing-related components via a vertical coupling clutch.
The perpetual calendar is recognizable by its large twin-aperture date display, complemented by indications of the day and whether or not it is a leap year, while the finishing touches are set by a day/night indication and an orbital moon-phase display.
The 45 mm case of the L.U.C Perpetual Chrono is made of "Fairmined" 18-carat gold, sourced from Fairmined certified mining cooperatives in Columbia, Peru and Bolivia. The L.U.C Perpetual Chrono in white gold is the first L.U.C watch being produced out of 18-carat "Fairmined" white gold by Chopard.
Both gold version come in limited edition of 20 pieces and priced around $95,000.
Finally, Chopard introduced the L.U.C Perpetual Twin, a perpetual calendar in stainless steel. This was nominated by Watchuseek as one of the show's best watch. Chopard created a new movement for this watch, caliber L.U.C 96.51-L. Despite some minor complaints like missing moonphase, or micro rotor not being gold, it is still an excellent offering by Chopard.
- Stainless steel
- Total diameter 43 mm
- Thickness 11.47 mm
- Water resistance 30 metres
- Stainless steel crown with L.U.C logo 6.50 mm
- Vertical satin-brushed case middle
- Polished bezel and case-back
- Glareproofed sapphire crystal
- Exhibition back
- Mechanical self-winding L.U.C 96.51-L
- Total diameter 33.00 mm
- Thickness 6.00 mm
- Number of jewels 27 jewels
- Frequency 28,800 vph (4 Hz)
- Power reserve: 58 hours
- Two barrels - Twin technology
- Automatic winding by a micro-rotor
- Bridges adorned with a Côtes de Genève motif
- Chronometer-certified (COSC)
- Silver-toned dial with sunburst satin-brushed motif focused on the calendar
- Perpetual calendar dials (large-aperture date, day of the week, month and leap years)
- Rhodium Dauphine-type hour, minute, day, month and small seconds hands
- Rhodium red-tipped triangular leap-year hands
- Rhodium Roman numerals
- Minute track
Functions and displays:
- Central display of the hours and minutes
- Small seconds display at 6 o'clock
- Large date display at 12 o'clock
- Day of the week and month displays at 9 and 3 o'clock respectively
- Offset leap-year display between 2 and 3 o'clock.
By Bhanu Chopra, Watchuseek