Elegance and simplicity often go hand in hand, and with the L.U.C 1963, Chopard has acknowledged this ethos. This new certified chronometer fluently combines old-world esthetics with subtle contemporary details, and inside beats a quite serious in-house, COSC-certified movement. The modern interpretation of classic does mean a larger case size, but otherwise this time-only watch ticks most of the boxes. Here’s a closer look at the L.U.C 1963.
Chopard’s L.U.C collection (named for founder Louis-Ulysse Chopard, in case you were wondering) includes a scope of watches from time-only pieces like the L.U.C 1937 Classic to grand complications and a beautiful tourbillon made for Only Watch 2013. The L.U.C. 1963 sits at the basic finish of that spectrum, powered by the in-house L.U.C Caliber 63.01-L movement. This is real in-house watchmaking, not an impostor.
This Caliber 63.01-L was developed with the Geneva Watchmaking School in 2010. Caliber 63.01-L is also a certified chronometer by the COSC and has a robust 60-hour power reserve. You can view the large and well-decorated movement at work through the sapphire caseback – notice how the 38mm movement fills out the case and sits extremely close to the caseback. You’ll also notice the Poinçon de Gèneve hallmark, which implies that this movement is partially constructed in Fleurier but finished and assembled in Geneva.
The high contrast dial contains a full arrangement of thick black Roman numerals that run nearly all the way to the edge. Moving inward, the minute track and sub-seconds dial at 9 o’clock both feature “sleeper” markers (between the 5-minute and 5-second markers) that do not stretch out all the way to the track’s boundaries. This subtle detail helps to achieve a feeling of lightness considering the watch’s large size and bold numerals. The sub-seconds dial features red Arabic numerals at 15, 30, 45, and 60. The way the dial overlaps with the minute track and adjacent numerals–without intersecting lines–is graceful and clean.
Speaking of that size, the case comes in at 44mm. We can’t reject that the watch looses some of its elegance here. The overall size, bold roman numerals, and ample white space on the dial, result in a watch that will wear much larger than it should on the wrist.
In an ideal world, the watch would come in around 39mm, though this is still a handsome new release from Chopard that harkens to a period of excellent watch plan, with an accurate in-house movement to match.
The L.U.C 1963 Chronometer retails for $37,580 in rose gold, with the price in platinum yet to be announced. Both editions are limited to 50 pieces each. For more details, visit Chopard online .