WATCH REVIEW: CHOPARD L.U.C PERPETUAL CHRONO

by | Aug 4, 2021 | Style, Watches

The newest limited release for Chopard of only 20 pieces, the L.U.C Perpetual Chrono, is a testament to their ongoing commitment to watch making, by continuing with an iteration of a movement seen first five years ago.

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A grand complication of this type is truly high horology. However, challenges can arise when trying to balance the watches technical achievement, while maintaining a clear design intention.

Canada’s best luxury website: A rare perpetual calendar

The case measures 45mm in diameter, and although housing a movement of this complexity is no small task, the piece would be better suited at 42mm.  The movement itself measures 33mm, begging the question: how much did the movement size, or dial layout and aesthetics, influence the overall case size?

It is obvious that the final diameter of the piece was carefully considered. Chopard keeps the lug length short, sweeps them noticeably towards the wrist. They have positioned the pivot point (spring bar location) of the strap closer to the case instead of placing it towards the end of the lug.

This manipulation of the lug design helps the watch wear smaller than the 45mm case diameter suggests.  However, if two or three millimetres had been shaved off the case size, the clever management of the lug design would not be as necessary.

Haute Horlogerie with a sporty look thanks to the titanium case and its calfskin bracelet

At this price point ($74,900 CHF, or $103,685 CDN), and the limited release, a safe first assumption is that the piece is platinum. However, the case is grade 5 titanium.  The use of titanium is an interesting choice, and certainly a matter of personal preference. But it sets up a noticeable contrast between the modern material and the otherwise very classic aesthetics of the Perpetual Chrono.

Titanium definitely contributes to lighter weight. For some this translates to a more comfortable wear. But don’t you want to feel every single ounce when you make this kind of investment? I like to know it is safely on my wrist without looking at it!

Certification of excellence and accuracy thanks to the Poinçon de Genève and the Chronometer certification

Chopard has done a good job conveying a lot of information on the dial with a few exceptions.  The Rhodium themed colour scheme is appropriately austere without being stuffy. And accent colours (like red to indicate Chronograph functions) are certainly complimentary.

The two aperture large date window at 12 o’clock is easy to read. Chopard’s ability to maintain (as closely as possible) a very classic three subdial design elevates the watch face, with additional indication tucked into the larger subdials.

Power reserve: 60 hours

Where the colour and layout work, and dial symmetry is maintained, the day/night subdial feels out of place. It’s seemingly better paired in correlation to the moon phase, instead of the day of the week subdial.  It might be the subtle sun and moon indications on the day/night subdial. Although the corresponding leap year indication on the opposite side of the dial seems on point to me.

In previous versions of the Perpetual Chrono, the day/night indication was bolder with the night side of the subdial in black (as well as the “L” Leap year quadrant of that subdial). So the more subtle approach on this piece is clearly intentional, just not to my taste.

Is there a readily obvious poetic solution? No, although it might be a good sign that this minor detail is the only thing I can think of to complain about!  The rotating moon phase and small seconds at 6 o’clock are well executed. But like the day/night indication the moon phase and small seconds do not feel like an intuitive pairing at first glance.

The more I handled the Perpetual Chrono the more and more sense the dial began to make. But it is important to note that at first glance a watch with this many complications can be a little disorienting.

Limited edition of 20 pieces

The Chopard L.U.C Perpetual Chrono is a serious timepiece and a real achievement for any Maison. No one will deny that this watch is a marvel.  At this price point there are also many, many choices in the world of horology.  Like any serious piece, a watch must speak to you beyond the technical details, or aesthetic highlights. What does the L.U.C Perpetual Chrono say to you?

The L.U.C Perpetual Chrono is limited to 20 pieces and lists for $74,900 CHF ($103,685 CDN).

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