The current issue of Revolution UK highlights the milestones in the 20-year journey of Chopard’s L.U.C collection. In just two decades, the brand that horological maestro Philippe Dufour has complimented for its level of finishing, has given us 11 base movements with 87 variations. Yet, until today, there has never been a worldtime calibre.
Now, until recently I’d never really seen a need for either a GMT or a world timer. I do travel a fair bit but I’ve never had a problem keeping track of a second timezone until this summer when I found myself leaving home in London to visiting two European destinations, a South America city and the West Coast of North America all in the same week. By the time I arrived in LA, my brain was so frazzled that no matter how hard I tried I couldn’t work out the correct time of day at my head office in Singapore. For the first time ever I found myself reliant on the clock function of my iPhone.
Basic GMTs use either a rotating bezel to align two different times – so that a single hour hand can point to 10 o’clock in New York as well as a number 5 on a rotating outer ring to show the time in London – or in the case of the new L.U.C GMT One, a second hour hand to point to home time on a 24-hour ring.
The GMT One features a dual-time function to allow both local and home time to be followed when travelling. Available in stainless-steel with a sunburst black dial and grey 24-hour outer ring for home time with daytime hours shown in white and night hours shown in orange. There is also a rose gold version with brown/white outer ring representing day and night. A crown at 2 o’clock adjusts local time, as well as the date at 6 o’clock, while a second crown at 4 o’clock moves the large orange arrow-tipped hand that indicates the second time zone (steel and gilt for the rose gold model). The new Chopard automatic Calibre L.U.C 01.10-L with 60-hour power reserve powers both watches.
Although a GMT would have helped slightly with my LA timing meltdown, what I really needed was to know several times across the globe. The worldtimer complication was first demonstrated in 1931 by Louis Cottier. A time when jet-setting was still the preserve of very few – little surprise then that only 455 worldtimer were produced by the time of Cotier’s death in 1966. Unlike GMTs which show two zones, worldtimers give the time in 24 or more (24 being the norm as the others have time zones varying by half or a quarter of an hour). The Time Traveler One is L.U.C’s first worldtimer complication and, giving the time in every corner of the world at a simple glance, it is the perfect accessory for the globetrotting gentleman – or woman. The date is shown on an inner ring and indicated via a central hand with arrow tip. Hours and minute are read off a railway track surrounding the date and adjusted by the crown at 2 o’clock. Beyond this is a 24-hour ring and a disc of city names representing the 24 main time zones. Home time is set via the crown at 4 o’clock.
The Time Traveler One is available in stainless steel with a sunburst black dial with contrasting silver, grey and orange accents. The rose gold version has a silver-toned dial with night-time hours shown in deep blue. And the dial of the platinum-cased model is layered in tones of grey and silver. All three cases measure 42mm in diameter, and feature a mix of satin-brushed and polished finishes. The brand new Calibre 01.05-L inside was developed and produced in the Chopard Manufacture in Fleurier and features a 60-hour power reserve. Impeccably finished the L.U.C Time Traveler One is –as are all L.U.C watches with a seconds hand – COSC-certified.
The new watches, as well as other important pieces from the first two decades of L.U.C, including the first L.U.C made in 1996, the L.U.C Quattro, the L.U.C 8HF, and the L.U.C Regulator, can be seen in a dedicated exhibition entitled L’Art D’Une Manufacture, which launches at Phillips Berkley Square on 11 October. The exhibition will be open to the public on 13 October before embarking on a worldwide tour.
L.U.C GMT One
Automatic L.U.C 01.10-L; 291 components; 28,800 vph (4 Hz); 60-hour power reserve; COSC certified
42mm stainless steel or rose gold; water-resistant to 50m
Alligator leather strap with alligator leather lining; stainless steel or rose gold pin buckle
L.U.C Time Traveler One
Automatic L.U.C 01.05-L; 262 components; 28,800 vph (4 Hz); 60-hour power reserve; COSC certified
42mm stainless steel, rose gold or platinum; water-resistant to 50m
Alligator leather strap with alligator leather lining and pin buckle in stainless steel, rose gold or platinum