The early 21st century of watchmaking will be looked back on as a time of tremendous innovation, particularly for the reinvention of traditional technologies and the reinterpretation of conventional ways of telling time. Aside from the celebrated independents, which have turned watch design upside down in recent years, Maurice Lacroix is one of the pioneers of this movement. It is a uniquely independent Swiss watch company that has been making its own movements since 2006, starting with the chronograph caliber ML106, and has been making its own cases since 1989 – this combination of capabilities has allowed the brand to be singularly inventive. It has developed a trademark design style that is modern and industrial looking, for which it has won numerous “Red Dot” awards – granted by a German-based foundation that recognizes excellence in industrial design. This design style was a forerunner in what is now a trend.
The latest model in its technically focused Masterpiece collection is the Seconde Mysterieuse, so called because the seconds dial, which dominates the watch face, is composed of a linear display with an indicator that rotates on its axis, creating the illusion that it is levitating. The horizontal and vertical axes of the display count off 15 second intervals. Minutes and hours are indexed separately on the upper part of the dial.
This unique display is driven by a new proprietary movement, the ML215 (the brand’s twelfth in-house movement), an automatic caliber with a 50-hour power reserve. The top arc of the dial is cut away to reveal the movement – rhodium or ruthenium plated bridges and a sanded finish, all presented in the brand’s trademark modern geometric form. The rotor is finished in a Côtes de Genève pattern. It will be made in two limited series of 125 pieces. One has a metallic blue hand and steel case, with rhodiumed movement. The other has a black PVD case and rhodiumed hands, with ruthenium movement execution.