Introducing the Chopard L.U.C 1860 Revolution Edition

Our take on one of the most important dress watches of the modern era.

One of the most feted watches of last year was Chopard’s L.U.C 1860 in Lucent Steel, with a salmon dial — a perfect tribute to one of the truly great watches of the 90s, 1997’s L.U.C 1860. Riding high on this resurgence of popularity comes the latest Revolution collaboration: the Chopard L.U.C 1860 Revolution Edition.

Chopard L.U.C 1860 Revolution Edition
Chopard L.U.C 1860 Revolution Edition

Before we talk about the latest addition, let’s explore the lore of the mighty Chopard L.U.C 1860 and the Calibre 1.96 that it houses. This watch was the debut of Chopard’s L.U.C collection (short for Louis-Ulysse Chopard, the founder of the brand), a then-new collection that would allow Chopard to flex its in-house watchmaking muscles. If no one had counted Chopard amongst the top tier of watchmakers prior to 1997, the L.U.C 1860 changed all that. First of all, the movement. Design and development started in 1993, and was completed in 1995. The COSC-certified movement featured the world’s first bi-directional micro-rotor, crafted in 22k gold. On top of that, there was a swan neck regulator with Breguet overcoil hairspring and an elegant, flowing movement design that featured plenty of hand anglage. The case measured in at just under 37mm, and the dial is complex, classical and simple — all at once.

Chopard L.U.C 1860 Revolution Edition

The reaction to this release was tremendous. The watch was critically lauded, and it set the tone for Chopard as manufacture, and put them toe-to-toe with the best that Swiss watchmaking had to offer.

Fast forward to today, and while the landscape of watchmaking has changed significantly, the fundamentals remain the same. So, the Chopard L.U.C 1860, still holds up. And, when you compare the old to the new, not much has changed. A slight evolution of the lines of the 36.5mm case, thicker lugs, and a brushed middle case, for example. Similarly, the movement is the 96.40-L, which lacks the date of the original and adds hacking seconds. It still has the stacked power barrels, giving this petite dress watch a punchy 65-hour power reserve. The dial is even made by the same manufacturer, Metalem, who famously also produced the dials for Philippe Dufour’s Simplicity. The only difference is that Chopard now owns the Metalem facility. The other major update is Lucent Steel, Chopard’s recycled steel that is harder and brighter than regular steel — and one of the many examples of Chopard leading when it comes to integrating sustainable materials.

Chopard L.U.C 1860 Revolution Edition
The svelte 36.5mm case stays true to the original L.U.C 1860, while still feeling at home on all wrist sizes today
Chopard L.U.C 1860 Revolution Edition
The untreated 18k gold dial quietly shimmers, giving off an air of understated elegance

Revolution’s latest collaboration with Chopard has been a long time coming, with the idea being broached back in 2017. The path til today has been long, but the wait is more than worth it. All the vital statistics of the watch remain the same, down to the Lucent steel case. But the dial, still with the same beguiling combination of engine-turned surfaces, is something new. It’s solid gold, like the 2023 salmon-dialled version, but unlike that watch, the dial hasn’t been galvanically treated in any way. It’s raw, pure gold. When you consider with the rich color and textural depth of the dial, compare it to the bright steel of the case and the utmost refinement of the details, the Chopard L.U.C 1860 Revolution Edition is a dramatically exciting watch.

The Chopard L.U.C 1860 Revolution Edition is produced in a limited edition of 50 pieces and priced at USD 25,200 excl. taxes. Available now.

Chopard L.U.C 1860 Revolution Edition

Ref: 168860-3002

Movement: Self-winding L.U.C caliber 96.40-L; 65-hour power reserve

Functions: Hours, minutes and small hacking seconds

Case: 36.5mm; Lucent Steel; water resistant to 30m

Dial: 18K gold guilloché; applied faceted hour markers

Strap: Matte calfskin grained leather; Lucent Steel pin buckle

Price: USD 25,200 excl. taxes

Availability: Numbered and limited edition of 50 pieces

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