Views from Baselworld 2013…
First time “Mille Miglia” on the dial…and nicely placed with the date window…
Baselworld 2013 preview…
This year Chopard will introduce a second model in the LUC “Engine One” collection. Named the Engine One H, this piece is similar to the LUC Engine One tourbillon (2010), except it has been rotated 90 degrees for a horizontal dial presentation. The Engine One is inspired by well, an engine, though it is a watch I find to have a somewhat radical look. At least when I think of the L.U.C watches, which represent the pinnacle of finishing from Chopard. I’m not sure which is more “normal” the new horizontal layout or the original vertically positioned model, probably this one. A conversation piece, that’s for sure.
Chopard L.U.C Engine One H
Limited Edition 100 pieces
44.5mm x 35mm titanium case
Look closely to see the center-set hour/minute hands; at nine of clock is the “Full/Empty” power reserve display; at three oclock is the tourbillon with Chopard’s variable intertia balance wheel
Chopard recently announced the availability of bicolored alligator straps for its L.U.C collection. The hand-sewn straps are offered in several excellent color combinations, and are exclusively available at Chopard Boutiques. Shown above on the Chopard L.U.C-1937.
Specially made for the its new boutique in Geneva, this Chopard L.U.C XPS is a limited edition of 25 pieces, cased in platinum, with a gorgeous metallic blue dial bearing the Geneva Seal on it. This watch is somewhat similar to the LUC XPS Poincon de Geneve Poinçon de Genève (Geneva Seal) 125th anniversary edition from 2011 (available direct from Chopard, $19,320); both have the Chopard Cal. 96.01-L. This gracefully decorated caliber is an ultra-thin automatic with micro-rotor, two barrels, and COSC certification (pictured below).
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by Kyle Stults on December 03, 2012
Chopard recently unveiled three new models in its “Classic Racing” collection, each with a new in-house, COSC-certified caliber made at the company’s Fleurier Ebauches workshops. This is significant because these are the first watches in the racing collection with movements entirely designed, developed and assembled in-house. And it is consistent with Chopard’s well known desire to further vertically integrate and thus ensure its long term independence. I’m not going to get into particulars right now, but suffice it to say that the movements look superb. A great aesthetic to them — partially openworked, very sporty, very much in-line with the racing theme — Chopard did an excellent job on this. Video and a few more looks, below.
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by Kyle Stults on August 29, 2012
Chopard Grand Prix de Monaco Historique
Limited Edition Series, 2002-2012
In this Perpetuelle Lookback, we will explore the limited edition Chopard Grand Prix de Monaco Historique watches which have been issued biennially since 2002. My examination of the various models yielded some interesting findings and observations as to how the collection has evolved over the years. The series has always been held in high regard by enthusiasts and collectors alike, and for good reason. Follow along now as I dissect the 2002-2012 Chopard Monaco Historique Collection — and see the evolution of an iconic collection!
Of course Chopard’s big watch unveil for 2012 is the Chopard Grand Prix de Monaco Historique Chronograph 2012, but I also really love the Chopard Mille Miglia line. The Chopard Mille Miglia, refreshed annually and with a few different variations, is one of the iconic racing-style watches, right down to the tire-tread racing which is inspired by a 1960s Dunlop tire motif. For this 2012 GMT, there are the oversized chronograph subdials and the “1000 Miglia” logo on the crown/caseback/dial; but in place of a tachy scale on the bezel is a 24-hour ring for the GMT function. On the back is the logo and a ring of perlage (the small, circular shaped pattern); perlage is typically a decoration reserved for the movement of a watch, but it actually looks pretty good on the caseback in this instance. Powering the Mille Miglia 2012 is a modified Swiss ETA Valjoux 7750 automatic movement — the movement has been upgraded with a GMT hand for a second time zone, and COSC certified. Lots of photos, check ‘em below.
Chopard Mille Miglia GMT Chrono Watch
2012 pieces in steel ($6,610) and 250 in rose gold ($20,880)
42mm steel or rose gold case (15mm thick), automatic mechanical movement (modified ETA 7750, GMT, COSC)
Mille Miglia VIDEO
Did You Know?
The Mille Miglia (literally “1000 miles”) covers a 1,000-mile (1,600 km) stretch from Brescia to Rome and back. Formerly a speed trial (1927-57), it is now the worldwide rendezvous for connoisseurs of collector’s cars.
by Kyle Stults on May 11, 2012
Show here are the two Grand Prix de Monaco Historique Chronograph timepieces that Chopard is set to unveil this coming weekend at the Grand Prix de Monaco Historique. Like the 2010 Chopard Grand Prix de Monaco pieces I find little if anything not to like about these splendid racing watches: the colors are great, the case is great (42mm titanium or titan+rose gold), the dial layout is great (note the horizontal racing strips at mid-dial) and the heritage is great. Every detail is right without anything being over the top. This is what Chopard is all about to me — the racing watch. I’d have a hard time choosing an Omega Speedy over a nice Mille Miglia or one of these Monaco Historique pieces — but that’s just me, a man who prefers the path less traveled.
Chopard Grand Prix de Monaco Historique Chronograph 2012
Titanium/orange edition (ref. 168992-3032) or limited, numbered edition (500 pieces) in titanium+rose gold/blue (ref. 168992-9001)
42.4mm case (14.7mm thick), automatic mechanical movement (COSC), on perforated grey Barenia leather strap with matching stitching and titanium pin buckle
note the “steering wheel” motif on the crown:
Monaco – my yacht, 3rd from left
Exhibition back, engraved with the GPMH initials and the Automobile Club de Monaco insignia:
Representing the “vintage version” of the Formula 1 Grand Prix, the Grand Prix de Monaco Historique was created in 1998 to mark the 700th anniversary of the Grimaldi family’s accession to the throne of the Principality. Raced along the same route through the streets of Monaco, it is reserved exclusively for classic racing cars, making it unique in its kind. Although initially intended as a one-off event, it is now on its 8th running and a much anticipated biannual event. This is Chopard’s sixth time as a sponsor.
Reminisce: Grand Prix de Monaco Historique 2010
Exhibition back, engraved with the GPMH initials and the Automobile Club de Monaco insignia
Baselworld 2012: With its L.U.C 8HF watch, Chopard is the latest to join the likes of Breguet (10Hz), De Bethune (Resonique), TAG Heuer and others (that’s all that come to mind right now) with an ultra high-frequency escapement. Ultra high-frequency escapements are slowing gaining ground, led by advancements in precision technology; there is no doubt that many elite watchmakers are dabbling in this area. The primary value of high frequency in watchmaking applications lies in a significant improvement in the precision timekeeping properties of a calibre, particularly in terms of rate resumption and stability. A higher number of vibrations of the balance means less sensitivity to disturbances — at least in theory. Though the long term reliability of high frequency movements is often questioned, Chopard and its L.U.C 01.06-L caliber can at least lay claim to the first 8Hz escapement to obtain COSC certification. The 8Hz (57,600 bph) is double the speed of most movements (28,800 bph). Of note with this caliber are its 60 hour power reserve derived from a single barrel, as well as the use of silicon for certain pieces of the escapement (see photo at bottom).
Chopard’s L.U.C 8HF has a 42 mm-diameter case made of titanium, further distinguished by its crown at 4 o’clock (also titanium). The date appears in a pointer-type display at 5:30, while the red small seconds hand at 6 o’clock travels far more smoothly than on ordinary watches thanks to the high-frequency escapement and its 57,600 vibrations per hour. A magnifying glass built into the half-closed case-back is positioned just above the high-frequency escapement, providing a chance to appreciate its finer details. The L.U.C 8HF is fitted onto a hand-sewn matte black alligator leather strap with a cognac-coloured alligator lining, with matching titanium pin buckle. A little funky and somewhat futuristic looking, but I suppose that is the point.
Chopard L.U.C 8HF Watch
limited edition 100 pieces
42mm titanium case, L.U.C 01-06-L 8Hz movement
by Kyle Stults on March 10, 2012
Baselworld 2012: Rounding out the 2012 Chopard collection is the exemplary Chopard L.U.C Lunar One watch. First launched in 2006 but now redesigned with a new aesthetic, the L.U.C Lunar One features a 43mm rose gold case housing a L.U.C. 96.13-L caliber with a perpetual calendar and orbital moon-phase display. In addition to the “Dauphine” style hands, the hours are now displayed as Roman numerals, framed by a railtrack graduation of a black transferred type similar to the three subdials indicating the small seconds, month and day of the week. The movement has a beautifully decoratd micro-rotor, is COSC rated and also meets criteria to obtain the Geneva Seal. It drives the hours, minutes, small seconds at 6 o’clock, a perpetual calendar with large twin-aperture date display at 12 o’clock, days of the week and 24-hour indication at 9 o’clock, as well as months and leap years at 3 o’clock.
Chopard L.U.C Lunar One Perpetual Calendar
43mm rose gold case, automatic mechanical manufacture movement (LUC 96.13-L)
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