L.U.C XP Skeletec
An ultra-thin case and openworked dial expressing the refinement of Chopard Manufacture’s watchmaking expertise
Since its launch in 2012, the L.U.C XP Skeletec timepiece has been admired for its perfect blend of technical precision and artisanal finishing. Its 7.2 millimetres of perfection make it one the thinnest self-winding skeleton watches on the market. It has now been reinvented to mark the 25th anniversary of Chopard Manufacture: a new design and a more open dial highlight the L.U.C 96.17-S movement, housed in an ethical 18-carat white gold case. Issued in a 50-piece limited edition, produced in the Maison’s workshops using an entirely hand-crafted skeletonisation process, the L.U.C XP Skeletec timepiece is one of the noblest expressions of the art of watchmaking according to Chopard.
The elegant design of the L.U.C XP Skeletec centres around the delicate interplay between the skeletonised movement and the dial ring that surrounds it. The designers of Chopard Manufacture have enlarged the central opening to further highlight the beauty of the skeletonization work and the technical complexity of the calibre. The surrounding dial takes on a more dynamic and contemporary aesthetic with the addition of a white minute track against a slate grey, satin-brushed surface. Pointed, polished hour-markers bring added nuance, partially overlapping with the skeletonised movement underneath.
An ultra-thin movement to admire
At just 3.3-millimeters thick, the L.U.C 96.17-S movement is a wonder of technical refinement. For most automatic watches, a winding rotor sitting on top of the movement adds inevitable height. With calibre L.U.C 96.17-S, however, Chopard’s engineers have devised a gold micro-rotor to sit flush with the movement bridges and ensure thinness, while Chopard Twin Technology delivers a lengthy 65-hour power reserve via two coaxial barrels. The extreme overall slenderness of this creation is no impediment to the full functionality of a high-performance watch housing a movement that has amply proved its reliability since its launch.
The skeletonization work, featuring plates and bridges artfully hollowed out to reveal the beauty of the inner workings, has been meticulously carried out by hand at Chopard Manufacture in Fleurier. In particular, a multitude of perfectly finished internal angles are a hallmark of exceptional work that can only be accomplished by the craftsman’s hand.
As a final flourish, a Côtes de Genève finish ripples across the skeletonised mainplate on the dial side, while the rhodium-plated black bridges make a striking contrast with the gilded gear wheels and micro-rotor.
Pioneering ethical gold
Above and beyond technical expertise, Chopard is proud to have been a pioneer in the watchmaking-jewellery sector through a responsible approach to its entire production chain, expressed since 2018 through its commitment to using 100% ethical gold in its watch and jewellery creations.
The L.U.C XP Skeletec model is no exception. Its 40-millimetre case in ethical 18-carat white gold with its long, graceful lugs ensures a smooth fit on the wrist, while its calfskin strap, featuring a velvety nubuck finish and tone-on-tone stitching, lends an aura of restrained monochrome understatement.
25 years of excellence, innovation and tradition
In 2021, Chopard is proud to mark the 25th anniversary of the creation of Chopard Manufacture in Fleurier. In 1996, when Swiss watchmaking was still emerging from the struggles of the quartz crisis, Chopard Co-President Karl-Friedrich Scheufele committed to defending and restoring the ancestral crafts and techniques passed down through generations of watchmakers. In the village of Fleurier, where watchmaking heritage goes back over 200 years, Chopard Manufacture would become a force for the finest techniques in traditional watchmaking, hand finishing and artistic crafts. In parallel, it has been able to innovate across the full range of modern watch production operations, from case and dial-making to movement development, advanced metallurgy and component manufacture. In particular, it has put chronometry – the ultimate measure of horological excellence – at the heart of all its activities.
It is thanks to this thriving hub of unique skills, and Karl-Friedrich Scheufele’s vision of what a modern Fine Watchmaking manufacture should be, that Chopard has been able to create timepieces valued by connoisseurs for whom passion and artistry unite in giving rise to watchmaking masterpieces.
L.U.C XP Skeletec
Numbered 50-piece limited edition in ethical 18-carat white gold
Ethical 18-carat white gold
Total diameter 40.00 mm
Thickness 7.20 mm
Water resistance 30 metres
Crown in ethical 18-carat white gold 5.00 mm
Vertical satin-brushed flanks and interhorn spaces
Polished bezel and case-back
Glare-proofed sapphire crystal
Mechanical with automatic winding L.U.C 96.17-S
Number of components 167
Total diameter 27.4 mm
Thickness 3.30 mm
Number of jewels 29
Frequency 28,800 vph (4 Hz)
Power reserve 65 hours
Skeletonised bridges with interior angles
Two barrels – Chopard Twin Technology
Winding via a stamped 22-carat gold micro-rotor
Balance-spring with flat terminal curve
Bridges adorned with Côtes de Genève motif
Dial and hands:
Openworked dial, slate grey colour obtained by galvanic coating, circular satin-brushed finish
Rhodium-plated chevron-shaped hour-markers
Rhodium-plated Dauphine-type hours and minutes hands
Functions and displays:
Central hours and minutes display
Strap and buckle:
Hand-sewn nubuck calfskin strap with grey nubuck calfskin lining – tone-on-tone stitching
Polished and satin-brushed pin buckle in ethical 18-carat white gold
Ref. 161984-1001 – in ethical 18-carat white gold
Numbered 50-piece limited edition