First Thoughts: Jaeger LeCoultre Reverso Grand Taille
The Jaeger LeCoultre brand is one that is synonymous with quality, design, and innovation; the Reverso is certainly a watch that exhibits all three of those attributes. The watch was created in the 1930’s at the request of polo players who desired a watch that could be worn as they played. JLC charged René-Alfred Chauvot with designing a watch that could satisfy the needs of the polo players. Chauvot developed a system for the watch that allowed the case to “flip” 180 degrees and protect the vulnerable crystal. This design allowed the watch to be elegant in casual settings, yet robust enough for sport all just by flipping the watch head. The Reverso was extremely successful for JLC and the watch was celebrated as the first luxury sports wristwatch. The Reverso has been in production for nearly a century and the collection offers many different movements, complications, dials, case sizes, and more.
I have seen many JLC Reversos in the flesh and all of them looked stunning; however, I never really had the opportunity to get hands on with one until recently. Now, I realize that the Reverso excels in more ways than one. I have always thought of the Reverso as a dress watch, which it absolutely is (by today’s standards), but it feels like it is capable of much more. In other words, the watch actually lends itself to be quite versatile in terms of what you can wear it with; after all, the Reverso was once a sports watch for polo players. The watch strikes me as being beautifully casual. What I mean by that is it is elegant enough to wear with the most formal attire, yet relaxed enough to wear with casual weekend outfits.
From a technical standpoint, the JLC Reverso feels very well constructed; it exhibits true attention to detail. The polishing of the case is good and the cuts on the steel are precise. The perlage found on the front of the back case (exposed when the watch head is “flipped”) is beautifully executed and is a very nice feature. The action of flipping the watch face over into the case is slick, yet reassuring with its secure “click” when the watch head is repositioned. The dial is very well finished and features beautifully printed appointments, these being the Arabic numerals, logo, and minute track. It also features brushed and wave textured surfaces that creates a lovely depth that is subtle. The dial also features sharp cuts around the minute track and a perfectly executed sub seconds register. The sword hands are blued and compliment the metallic dial perfectly. The movement is manual winding and it is very nice to interact with; it is a simple yet reliable movement that is well finished (even though you can’t see it) and compliments the watch.
The JLC Reverso is an icon of classy art deco design and to this day, it still feels special. The watch is a perfect blend of modern construction and classic character.
-Manufacturer: Jaeger LeCoultre
-Reference Number: 2708410
-Case Materials: Stainless steel
-Strap: Genuine crocodile with deployant clasp
-Water Resistance: 30 meters (100 feet)
-Crown: Non screw-down
-Bezel: Stainless steel
-Country of Origin: Switzerland
-Price: Approximately 6,000 USD
-Lug Width: 18mm
-Name: JLC Caliber 822
-Type: Manual winding
-Certifications: None; regulated in house by JLC
-Power Reserve: Approximately 45 hours
-Frequency: 3 Hz or 21,600 bph
-Complications: Hours, minutes, sub-seconds, manual winding