Maurice Lacroix AIKON Automatic Chronograph Limited Edition
The Maurice Lacroix AIKON Automatic Chronograph Limited Edition is a bold timepiece, created for an innovative competition entitled #CHASEYOURWATCH. Participants from around the globe vied for the chance to win one of only 500 timepieces. However, a small number of watches are available for sale via e-retail, sating the desires of those would-be wearers who never win anything.
This detailed review of the Maurice Lacroix AIKON Automatic Chronograph Limited Edition includes live images, specification details and pricing.
Earlier this year, Maurice Lacroix invited the public to enter an innovative competition entitled ‘#CHASEYOURWATCH’. The creative Swiss brand announced four locations, each a major city, where a series of clues could be found. Ultimately, the clues led the frontrunner in each city to ‘a secret location’ where they located a black and yellow box. Each box contained a plane ticket to Basel, an accommodation voucher and an invite to Baselworld, the annual watch and jewellery fair.
On Maurice Lacroix’s Baselworld stand, the winners of the four preliminary events were invited to enter an escape room where they had 20 minutes to work together as a team to ‘break out’. The game quartet were triumphant and each returned home with their own Maurice Lacroix AIKON Automatic Chronograph Limited Edition. The brand from Saignelégier has since repeated the challenge, selecting different cities and inviting more lovers of horology to #CHASEYOURWATCH.
Thankfully, for those would-be wearers who do not share the same good fortune as the aforementioned winners, Maurice Lacroix offers an alternative path to ownership. The Swiss brand is selling a small number of its AIKON Automatic Chronograph Limited Edition, exclusively via e-retail. The watch is limited to 500 pieces and sports a distinctive appearance, quite different from its sibling, the non-limited AIKON Automatic Chronograph.
The topography of the dial shares little in common with the standard AIKON Automatic Chronograph and the colours of the horological landscape are very different. The dial is anthracite, sun brushed and adorned with a lattice-like motif.
The black plated hour and minute hands are slender and lined with white SuperLuminova. The applied indices are silver-grey, albeit they sometimes appear black depending on the prevailing light. The yellow varnished chronograph seconds hand features a black counterweight, making the yellow section of the hand appear more prominent.
Three subdials populate the dial, each framed with a gleaming ring. A 30-minute chronograph register resides at 3 o’clock, a 12-hour chronograph register is positioned at 6 o’clock and a small seconds display is located at 9 o’clock. The two chronograph registers are snailed and feature yellow numerals and hands, differentiating them from the time indications.
A date aperture is positioned at 4:30. White numerals, san serifs, adorn a black date disc which sits harmoniously with the adjacent grey and black hues.
The rehaut is black and adorned with crisp yellow numerals and discrete yellow markings. The design of the rehaut and the judicious use of colour heightens readability, providing a notable degree of style.
The Maurice Lacroix AIKON Automatic Chronograph Limited Edition is presented in black and anthracite PVD. These stealthy hues imbue the watch with a contemporary and sporty appearance and play a deferential role adjacent the various yellow details.
Measuring 44mm in diameter, the Maurice Lacroix AIKON Automatic Chronograph Limited Edition delivers great wrist presence. The relationship between the watch-head and the wearers wrist is sublime, distinguishing this watch as special. Indeed, there are few watches which can surpass the wearer comfort provided by this chronograph.
I suspect one reason for the exalted levels of wearer comfort relates to the integrated lug design. The grey strap sits snugly against the skin, feeling secure without pinching the wrist. In addition, the caseback nuzzles the arm and the watch-head sits flush with the wrist. The AIKON bestows peerless ergonomics.
The ‘arms’ which span the bezel evince a tasteful gleam, conferring contrast with the matt upper surface of the bezel. This polished appearance extends to the sides of the bezel. Throughout the case, Maurice Lacroix has skilfully juxtaposed polished and matt surfaces.
The pushpieces provide another flourish of style. While the pushpiece at 4 o’clock is presented in black, the pusher at 2 o’clock is presented in a vibrant yellow hue. It is the repeated interplay of black, anthracite and yellow tones which enriches the appearance of the Maurice Lacroix AIKON Automatic Chronograph Limited Edition.
While the strap resembles canvas, it is actually grey calf leather, paired with a black PVD butterfly clasp.
An exhibition caseback affords views of the automatic ML157 movement.
The Maurice Lacroix AIKON Automatic Chronograph Limited Edition does not share the same movement as the standard AIKON Automatic Chronograph. This limited edition model is endowed with the self-winding ML157.
The ML157, also used in some of the Pontos models, contains 27 jewels and the power reserve is sufficient to deliver 48 hours autonomy. The balance has a frequency of 28,800 VpH (4Hz). The movement is rhodium plated. The oscillating weight and automatic device bridge are adorned with Côtes de Genéve motif and perlage embellishes various surfaces below.
The AIKON has been a resounding success for the Swiss firm. It brims with quality, exudes a high quotient of style and is accessibly priced.
The dial of this limited edition watch is suffused with a myriad of squares. This detail imbues the dial with becoming depths. Indeed, this three dimensional vista confers much eye-appeal. Moreover, style does not come at the expense of practicality. The hands and indices are highly legible and the information presented on the subdials lucidly converses with the wearer.
A notable strength of the Maurice Lacroix AIKON Automatic Chronograph Limited Edition is wearer comfort. The relationship between the watch and the wrist is superb and outperforms many costlier timepieces in this regard.
Maurice Lacroix has successfully paired polished and matt surfaces in close proximity. This is more challenging than it sounds. The objective of keeping each finish discrete necessitates much skill and time when polishing. The fact that Maurice Lacroix has delivered these details while ensuring the watch remains accessibly priced should be applauded.
The aesthetic appearance of the Maurice Lacroix AIKON Automatic Chronograph Limited Edition is unusual, striking and yet cohesive. It pairs brooding blacks and greys with ebullient yellow details. Indeed, this is a watch that is both non-conformist and slightly rebellious but, in my opinion, is a highly practical ownership proposition.
- Model: Maurice Lacroix AIKON Automatic Chronograph Limited Edition
- Case: Black and anthracite PVD; diameter 44mm; sapphire crystal to front and caseback; water resistant to 20 ATM (200 metres).
- Functions: Hours, minutes, small seconds, date and chronograph.
- Movement: ML157; automatic movement; frequency 28,800 vph (4Hz); 27 jewels; power reserve = 48 hours
- Strap: Grey calf leather with a black PVD butterfly clasp
- Price: £2,990 (RRP as at 23.10.2018)