To honor the Scheufele family’s 50 year legacy at the helm of Chopard, the brand created a limited edition L.U.C chronograph that combines design elements from the early sixties with those of a modern Chopard chronograph. The Chopard L.U.C 1963 Chronograph commemorates the year that Chopard was sold to Karl Scheufele, father of the current co-presidents, Caroline and Karl-Freidrich. With a classic charm, period-inspired movement, and modern proportions, the Chopard L.U.C 1963 Chronograph is a fitting nod to the last 50 years of Chopard.
My friend David has an impressive collection of sports watches and wanted to include something that he would wear when dressed up to go out. Something which was fit for this purpose only. Something special that would reflect his frame of mind after he was allowed to take out the fuss and nonsense of his everyday life and only was allowed to be.After my very first introduction to the Chopard Twist, said above, I graphically remonstrated with David that this was among the very best value for money dress watches out there, when consideration was given to materials, hand finishing and design. Sadly, like me, David couldn’t justify to himself or his wife that he could invest over #10,000 about the LUC Twist, that could effectively be just a “going out” watch. Luckily, for him Chopard have created the L.U.C. Classic in Stainless Steel, that is a lot less than half of the price but still demands the adjective, exquisite.David agreed with me that the L.U.C. moves are all desired and, honestly, do offer decent value for money in comparison with similar yields. He instantly knew he had found what he was searching for when he chose to try on the L.U.C. Classic he has kindly lent me to feature here.A watch showing two time zones simultaneously, the L.U.C GMT One is a straightforward travel watch and the more affordable of this pair. The crown at two o’clock sets the date and local time (shown on the main hour and second hands), whereas the crown at four o’clock improvements the arrow-tipped GMT hand and 24-hour outer scale on the dial.
Exclusively available in rose gold and 42 mm sizing, the Chopard Imperiale 36mm Price Replica L.U.C 1963 Chronograph is 11.5 mm thick with sapphire crystals front and back. The case, while quite current in proportions, is a classic styling that really allows the 18k rose gold to shine. Finished with a simple but large crown and a set of piston pushers, this may well be a design that we see on watches from over 50 years ago – with Chopard simply photocopying it at 110%; but there is nothing wrong with that when it is tastefully done.
The silver sunburst dial is radiant, and the black roman numerals and deep red chronograph accents offer texture and color that helps to complete the look. With a maximum 12 hour measure and running seconds at six, take note of how each subdial gets its own layout that directly services the unit and resolution of each measure. Legibility is excellent and the dial layout seems thoughtful and detailed, without being pushy. A little detail that I always enjoy is when the hands for the chronograph are all of the same color, and one that differs from that of the hands used for the indication of the time. Here, the chronograph’s hands are in a deep red color, while the hours, minutes and running seconds are indicated by gold hands.
Text is minimal, with a date display offered between four and five and a complete 60 scale around the outer circumference of the dial. Again, the main time hands are rose gold and polished to catch light in a very deliberate fashion, with legibility not taking a back seat to the overall design.
So, the case size is rather modern and the dial design is certainly classic, but what about the movement? The Chopard L.U.C 1963 Chronograph is currently Chopard’s only hand-wound chronograph, and that’s because it uses a new in-house manufacture chronograph movement. Dubbed the L.U.C 03.07-L, this fully integrated chronograph movement sports not only a column wheel, vertical clutch, and a flyback complication, but also COSC certification and the Poincon de Genève (aka the Geneva Seal).
The L.U.C 03.07-L is a 4Hz movement with a 60-hour power reserve supported by 38 jewels and no less than 300 distinct parts. Very few brands offer an in-house chronograph, and the fact that the L.U.C 03.07-L carries the Geneva Seal speaks to its high level of finishing and decoration. Chopard designs the movement to have a gold toned base and sides, while the cams, which are nickel silver, are finished with a straight brushed pattern. The final result is stunningly beautiful, and even offers an open view of the column wheel, thanks to a cutaway in a nearby bridge.
While Chopard has put forth a commendable effort in designing this beautiful and mechanically interesting tribute to the Scheufele family, don’t expect to see one in the wild. Chopard is producing just 50 pieces of the Chopard L.U.C 1963 Chronograph, and the $44,440 asking price, while certainly a massive sum of money, can be considered a good value among competition from Glashütte Original, A. Lange and Söhne, Vacheron Constantin – and even Patek. Competition aside, I think the Chopard L.U.C 1963 Chronograph is one of Chopard’s most attractive chronographs and we’re excited to see what other watches could house the L.U.C 03.07-L movement in the future. chopard.com