Chopard, from the top names of luxury watchmaking, was the guest of our review corner with the re-introduced version of its legendary Alpine Eagle model.
Before we proceed to the review of the watch, let's talk a little about the history of the model. At the age of 22, Karl-Friedrich Scheufele, who worked as an employee in his family's atelier, went to his father and shared his first watch project in 1980. The first watch designed by Scheufele, St. Moritz, was both the first sports watch and the first stainless steel watch of the brand specialized in gold and diamond gold watches. Scheufele's design, which has achieved great success with a highly risky venture, has been Chopard's best-selling model for the next decade. Together with this success, Karl-Friedrich Scheufele became the ‘co-president’ of the brand.
The model we have here for review, REF. NUMBER: 298600-3002, comes with a sporty case measuring 41mm in diameter. The case is made of the brand's patented stainless steel alloy 'Lucent Steel A223'. The new alloy stands out with its features similar to surgical steel. On the other hand, the alloy, which took about four years to develop, is 50 percent more resistant to abrasion than traditional steel with its 223 Vickers hardness value. The case is equipped with sapphire crystals on both sides and is water-resistant to 100 meters. The thick bezel featuring eight flat-headed screws and the screw-in winding crown decorated with the North Star relief are the other details that highlight the sporty theme of the model.
A thick, strong stainless steel bracelet completes the sporty case of the model, which features mostly matte-finish-surfaces. An elegant folding clasp secures the bracelet that offers a balanced combination of matte and glossy surfaces.
The integration between the case and the bracelet is excellent. This duo is very successful in the comfort side as well. I think you already noticed that the next sentence is going to start with the word "however". First, the bezel is very thick for the case. This causes the watch to appear smaller than it is, even with the metallic gray dial that provides the closest color tone to the case. The bracelet, which tappers very little from the case to the clasp, makes this situation even more evident. Normally, I would not mention anything about compact size diameters as a downside (as I wear a 36mm Day-Date daily), but I wanted to point out that the case does not look like 41mm at all.
There are many aesthetic elements worth mentioning in the new Chopard Alpine Eagle model. I think the dial has a particular place among these elements. First, the model I have for review features an amazing metallic gray dial. It offers an incredibly harmonious image with the unique shine of the Lucent Steel A223 material. The pattern on the dial surface is by far the best I have ever seen. Forget the sunray or even the Guilloché patterns that you are used to. It is hard to explain the beauty of this dial through photos, which was inspired by the eyes of the Alpine Eagle.
Roman numerals were preferred in black-framed applique indexes. Long Super-LumiNOVA filled baton hands accompany this detail adding a three-dimensional look to the dial. The date indicator, which is located at 4:30, comes with a background color that will not ruin the integrity of the dial. Thanks, Chopard!
The model ticks with the manufacture Caliber 01.01-C. 31-jewel and COSC certified automatic movement operates at a frequency of 4Hz / 28,800vph and offers a power reserve of up to 60 hours when fully wound. The movement, consisting of 207 parts, offers a plain but high-quality image with its modest decoration and perforated rotor.
Chopard Alpine Eagle REF. NUMBER: 298600-3002 was a model that I was very curious about. To be honest, I had prepared myself to experience a disappointment like the one I had with the Bell & Ross BR 05. However, I encountered a very different watch than I have seen in the photos. If what I mentioned above about the size and the wrist presence are no downsides for you, Chopard Alpine Eagle is a model that should be included in your ‘should be seen in person’ list. The price stated on the official website for the model is CHF 12,450.