The Chopard L.U.C 1963 Platinum replica Limited Edition was launched to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Scheufele family owning the prestigious watch replica and jewellery company. Angus Davies gets ‘hands-on’ with this elegant timepiece.The watches which bear the three initials of Chopard’s founder, Louis-Ulysse Chopard, have become a byword for haute horlogerie, fusing technical ingenuity and fine Swiss craftsmanship.
In 2013, Chopard released the L.U.C 1963 Platinum Limited Edition, a fine looking timepiece created to celebrate the first 50 years of Chopard ownership in the hands of the Scheufele family. The styling is imbued with a traditional air that I find most becoming, hence there was no hesitation on my part when presented with the opportunity to try on this rare watch replica and appraise its classical form.
With the passage of time comes experience. In 1963, the Scheufele family acquired Chopard and have since guided the company to increasing commercial success, producing eye-catching jewellery and some of the finest timepieces in existence.
‘Purity’ is a word which comes to the fore when appraising the aesthetics of the Chopard L.U.C 1963 replica watch Limited Edition. There is an elegant refinement to the dial of this watch replica which effortlessly communicates hours, minutes and seconds with clear diction. Ease of understanding is a given with each element of the dial distilled to the nth degree.
At 9 o’clock, a small running seconds is presented on a printed subdial, overlapping the chemin de fer. Its perimeter is framed with a circlet, marked with neat, black strokes and red Arabic numerals. Each two-digit value is dissected with a tear-shaped index.
The Dauphine-fusée hour and minute hands have become a key aspect of the L.U.C design language and, in this instance, magnificently collaborate with the Roman numerals and chemin de fer, respectively.
Black and white tones are logical bedfellows and confer a high degree of contrast, often lacking with other colour combinations. The white ‘porcelain-type’ dial has a comely purity, like a young face sans makeup. There is a welcome absence of excessive adornment and distracting detail.
The L.U.C 1963 Platinum Limited Edition is one of the larger models in the L.U.C collection, measuring 44mm in diameter with a case height of 11.5mm. However, its scale, when considered in a wider context, could not be described as ‘oversized’ and assumes a tasteful, seemly presence upon the wrist.
It is when appraising the minutiae of this watch replica that pleasing pockets of discovery are experienced. The caseband eschews straight, vertical sides in favour of soft, arcing lines which heighten the visual prowess of the design.
The selection of platinum for the case material seems unusual for a 50th anniversary watch, with gold being a more obvious choice. However, whilst Chopard do offer a gold version of this timepiece, I adore the softly spoken charms of the platinum case. The upper surface of the lugs and bezel are highly polished but the caseband is satin-brushed, reinforcing the self-effacing character of the watch.
The highly polished white gold crown sparkles in contrast to the aforementioned caseband and bears three letters, familiar to those in the know, L.U.C. The lug design includes sharply tapering sections which coax the strap to encircle the wrist.
The hand-wound L.U.C 63.01-L is a gorgeous exemplar of fine watchmaking. Large movement bridges, adorned with Côtes de Genève motif, are spaced apart, allowing sight of the gear train. This is a spectacle I find most agreeable.
Polished screw and jewel sinks underscore the sense of sophistication. The gear train wheels are circular grained and a sea of perlage is visible adjacent the balance. The bevelled nickel silver bridges are wonderful to behold.
The balance spring is secured with a sliding stud cap and the movement is equipped with a swan-neck regulator. As if to reaffirm the technical provenance of the manually-wound movement, the Poinçon de Genève graces the movement and the case. Moreover, the movement is certified as a chronometer by COSC.
Whilst I appreciate timepieces equipped with complications, there is something very appealing about the limited indications shown on the dial of the L.U.C 1963 Platinum Limited Edition. Its dial shuns complexity and succinctly articulates time with a notable degree of style. Indeed, the aesthetic codes employed on this watch replica exhibit a welcome wholesomeness, whilst the movement reveals much mechanical virtue.
- Model: Chopard L.U.C 1963 Platinum Limited Edition
- Reference: 161963-9001
- Case: Platinum; diameter 44.00mm; height 11.50mm; sapphire crystal to front and caseback.
- Functions: Hours, minutes; small date.
- Movement: L.U.C 63.01-L; hand-wound movement; frequency 21,600 vph (3Hz); 20 jewels; power reserve 60 hours
- Strap: Black alligator leather strap presented on a 18K white gold pin buckle.
- Limited Edition: 50 pieces
With the benefit of 50 years of wisdom in crafting sublime watches, the Scheufele family and the talented employees of Chopard replica watch have shown there is no substitute for experience, delivering a timepiece which tellingly illustrates the capability of this impressive maison.