The Chopard L.U.C XPS 1860 Officer Cheap Replica Watch is close to being a perfect replica watch for me. It isn't the only replica watch I'd want to own, but as a dress-style replica watch - there is little else I could ask for when blending design, materials, artistic technique, and utility into a single timepiece. As a limited edition released for 2017, this is the Chopard L.U.C reference 161242-1001. Let's take a close look at what it is all about and why I like it.
Chopard's L.U.C collection of replica watches comes out of their higher-end facility in Switzerland. Not that "core" Chopard men's replica watches aren't high-end or really nice, but L.U.C products up the ante in terms of the movement quality as well as the inclusion of (occasional) hand-applied artistic techniques to the movement, dial, or case. In many ways, L.U.C are the most traditional in style timepieces that Chopard makes, and are exactly what many timepiece enthusiasts are looking for.
When it comes to important factors such as movement finishing and decoration (not to mention mechanical design), L.U.C can regularly compete with best the industry has to offer from brands such as Audemars Piguet, Patek Philippe, Breguet, and Vacheron Constantin. L.U.C replica watches nevertheless tend to be a bit better priced, have more original designs, and feel a bit less as though they were designed by a committee (this latter statement is a bit of a generalization - but it does feel as though many Chopard L.U.C replica watches have distinct and individual personalities).
The Chopard L.U.C XPS 1860 Officer is a limited edition replica watch that builds on an existing L.U.C XPS model by adding some artistic embellishments. These embellishments don't really add utility value, but rather the type of emotional value that helps convince otherwise practical people like me and you to buy luxury timepieces in the first place.
According to Chopard, this reference 161242-1001 replica watch celebrates when "distinction meets discretion," and is the type of product that "harbours a wealth of secrets and symbols." So what exactly is there to discover in the Chopard L.U.C XPS 1860 Officer replica watch? For one, it is an homage to one of the first Chopard L.U.C replica watches from 1996, which was known as the L.U.C 1860.
Let's begin with the basics. The replica watch case is 40mm wide, 7.7mm thick, and water resistant to 30m. The case is produced in 18k white gold, and has a hunter-style case back. This is rather uncommon for a Chopard replica watch, and is one of the distinguishing factors of the replica watch (at least for the brand). The case back on the outside is decorated with hand-operated machine guilloche engraving, and the inside of the case back is further decorated with hand-engraved text and imagery. More on that shortly.
Hunter-style case backs are sometimes called "officer-style" ones - hence that part of the product's name. The motif on the inside of the cover is supposed to be Chopard's "historic" (from the 1990s) logo, along with a beehive. This latter part might be quizzical to many people, until you realize that in Fleurier where Chopard is, it isn't uncommon to have honey-making bees around. More so, according to Chopard, in the early days of the brand's thematic founder Louis-Ulysse Chopard (where "L.U.C" comes from) the movements were "all engraved, both on their movements and inside their cover, with a beehive surrounded by bees." I believe Chopard may have sent me Chopard-branded honey before. I know for a fact that I received very delicious honey from Jaeger-LeCoultre (from the beehives which operate right across the street from the manufacture).
I find the hand-engraving charming, and I also find that it adds immensely to the personality of the product. More importantly, it is a touch of hand-applied work done by someone talented and with special training. This type of attention is exactly what we dream our high-end luxury replica watches have, and this engraving is proof that this replica watch has at least some of that. Though, as you will learn, the replica watch has even more hand-applied artistic effort.