Chopard L.U.C. 1863 'Quattro' - Rose Gold
Chopard is a revered watch manufacturer that has built a diverse audience over the decades. Despite a history dating back to when its founder Louis-Ulysse Chopard produced slender pocket watches in 1860, the more contemporary aspect of the brand's watchmaking offerings only began to take serious shape in the second half of the 20th century. After acquiring the renowned name from the original owner's descendants, Karl Scheufele III toiled with his close family to strengthen Chopard, with his son, Karl-Friedrich, leading the watchmaking department. But this venture wasn't going to be taken lightly, as sights were set on creating a vertically integrated calibre capable of a large power reserve and plenty of versatility to secure the brand's longevity. As a result, in 1996 the watchmaker announced its first in-house calibre, the Calibre 1.96.
Representing the first evolution of this esteemed movement was the calibre 1.98, debuting in the Chopard LUC Quattro 1863. With its re-imagined date display, a power reserve indicator at twelve, and a larger 38mm case width, this eight-day strong watch was a large piece for its time, in every sense of the word. Said to have been limited to 1860 pieces across various tones of gold, the actual production numbers are believed to be much lower than that. Combined with its €35,700 retail price, the outcome is an uncommon rarity in today's market. As was customary, the watches were fitted with finely produced solid gold dials created by Metalem – a manufacturer that famously went on to work with Philippe Dufour on the Simplicity.
In short, this is an example of over-engineering at its finest. Presented in 18k rose gold, this Chopard LUC Quattro 1863 is a sleek proposition, whichever way you look at it, with practical functionality delivered without compromise. With an issue number within the first 50, the polished case is confidently shown, as each lug possesses a broad and confident appearance. Elegance is achieved and enhanced with the inwardly stepped bezel working to aid wearability while maintaining a classic appearance.
With refinement, sophistication, and attention to detail, this stepped dial is awash with nuance and real personality, presented in a deep black colour despite being crafted from gold. It comprises three different textures, with the most commanding being the rose guilloché pattern at the centre of the piece. Here is Chopard's cursive signature eloquently framed as well as the exquisite dauphine style rose gold hands, with the minute hand stretching right to the edge of the dial and the beginning of the minute track. The next influential element is the delicately circular brushed outer of the dial surrounding the guilloche providing welcomed contrast. This creates the ideal canvas for the multi-faceted dart-style hour indices to sit above the dial, with their construction from rose gold boosting the opulence. Said hour markers are consistently sized and present on the dial until arriving at the twelve o'clock position, where a sunken power reserve is neatly nestled in its place. Advancing to eight, the pointed arrow of this retrograde scale allows for instant readability. Finally, the lower half of the Quattro 1863's dial is controlled by its dual purpose sub-register, instantly recognisable as its subsidiary seconds. Compelling to note is the date display at six, skillfully integrated surrounding the subsidiary seconds so as not to disrupt the strength of the Chopard's design.
As is apparent throughout the presentation of this watch, the movement making it all possible is significantly superior to many counterpart movements from this era. The Calibre 1.98 is an evolved take on the pioneering 1.96, as its manual wind mechanics can hold eight days worth of power. The watch itself has its movement to thank for part of its name, as "Quattro' refers to the double-stacked twin mainspring barrels resulting in four in total and a power capacity many of the most prestigious watchmakers still strive for today. Vibrating at 28,800 vph, this calibre features 39 jewels, a COSC certification, the Geneva Seal, five positions adjustment, and complete hand-finishing throughout. Due to immense bridges, the movement's Côtes de Genève is commanding with mirrored anglage on their edges and engine-turned perlage peeping through from the base plate. The black polished Swan neck regulator is shared from the 1.96 as is the quick set date functionality.
This 1863 harbours a small but noteworthy secret: despite the power reserve scale reading 8, this Chopard has an even longer running time, with estimates closer to 9-10 days. Regardless, Chopard consciously decided to only say eight on the dial to ensure the wearer doesn't run out of energy.
How It Wears
At 38mm in diameter with a height just shy of 10mm, the Chopard LUC Quattro 1863 leaves a presence without feeling overwhelming. Let's not forget that although the size was large at its inception, this piece occupies quite the sweet spot for the full span of wrist sizes today. The mixture of gold and black dials can feel particularly strong and confident, but due to the softer tones of the rose metal and its chic dial furniture and hands, dignity is the lasting emotion when glancing down for a wrist check.
This Chopard LUC Quattro 1863 is presented with Chopard service papers dating from 03/08/2022, an extract from the Chopard archives dating from 13/07/2022, as well as a service-warranty certificate. The original 18ct rose gold pin buckle is included, however, the strap fitted to the piece is a Mr Watchley Saffiano Leather in Onyx.
If you desire to take a closer look at this precious timepiece, don't hesitate to contact us and make an appointment. We are based in Ghent, Belgium
No stock kept on site
* Every watch is delivered in a Mr WATCHLEY Membrane Protection Box for a safe transportation in addition to its original set *
|Size (Case)||38 mm|
|Material (Case)||Rose gold|
|Bracelet||Mr Watchley Saffiano Onyx|
|Papers||Chopard extract & service papers|