Maurice Lacroix has had its share of surprises the last few years at Baselworld, making 2014 all the more interesting: introducing the Masterpiece Gravity.
Maurice Lacroix Masterpiece Collection
To put it bluntly the Masterpiece Collection was created specifically to allow Maurice Lacroix to show off, and rightly so. For years the brand was considered by many to be just another generic watch manufacturer creating good quality, reliable enough watches that were pitched at an already overcrowded, low to mid-range market.
To be fair, this still remains a fairly accurate assessment for the most part but in 2010 something happened that would seriously change the way people looked at Maurice Lacroix; the unveiling of the Masterpiece Roue Carrée Seconde, otherwise known as the Square Wheel watch.
The highlight of this highly unorthodox timepiece was the square seconds indicator at six o’clock, something you just had to see in person to really appreciate. This success was followed up in 2013 with the equally eye-catching Masterpiece Seconde Mystérieuse, which again focused on displaying the seconds in a unique and unusual way.
Now in 2014 it seems Maurice Lacroix has dispensed with its seconds obsession and is now turning the focus solely onto the technical aspects of watchmaking. To evidence this you need look no further then the new Masterpiece Gravity.
There are no visual tricks here, no clever gimmicks to attract your attention, no, the real drawcard here is good old-fashioned watchmaking, reimagined for the 21st Century. You see, this is the first watch from Maurice Lacroix to feature a silicon assortment: balance roller, lever, and escapement wheel.
Normally reserved for brands with much higher price tags attached (for example one of the first silicon escape wheels made its debut in a Patek Philippe timepiece back in 2005), this achievement is especially notable when you consider that development of the movement was done primarily in-house, in conjunction with Haute Ecole Arc. Not bad for a brand whom many people would consider entry-level.
Overall the design is quite attractive, if a little simplistic but I like that as it really puts the focus the main attraction. An off-center, white lacquered dial shows hours and minutes in a classic format, whilst seconds are shown on a second, smaller sub-dial at 5 o’clock. The case measures a reasonable 43mm in steel and also comes in a black PVD coated version, both of which are presented on leather straps.
No word on pricing just yet but expect it to be significantly higher than you’d pay for a standard Maurice Lacroix timepiece, although not astronomically so (I hope).
The Final Word
As cool as the previous models from the Masterpiece Collection were, I think I like the new Masterpiece Gravity from Maurice Lacroix the best. There’s a certain integrity to it that I really find appealing, which is refreshing in a market dominated by gimmicks designed to capture customer attention. Sure it’s not a revolutionary game-changer, not by any stretch of the imagination, and it will probably earn the brand less coverage than previous models but it does show that Maurice Lacroix is serious about watchmaking and I kind of like that.