The Chopard Alpine Eagle XL Chrono collection debuted with a selection of three-hand models back in 2019 and the Fleurier-based manufacture has used the little time since to expand upon the exceptionally successful recipe of the original. The Chopard Alpine Eagle XL Chrono is a special addition to the collection because it is the largest and grandest rendition of the Alpine Eagle at 44mm-wide, making the best use of all that extra space to include the brand’s 03.05-C in-house chronograph movement. Chopard and motorsports go back decades, all the way to the late 1980s when the brand started sponsoring the Mille Miglia, “the most beautiful race in the world” with which it has been in continuous partnership ever since. It is no surprise, then, that the sporty Alpine Eagle XL Chrono, equipped with a tachymeter scale, is presented on the wrist of Jacky Ickx, six-time 24 Hours of Le Mans winner and long-time friend of the brand. The dial is characterized by red accents and amply sized and situated markers across the main display as well as the subdials to allow for the accurate reading of the measured time — an essential feature for chronographs rich with racing DNA. The backdrop remains the beautifully textured pattern inspired by the eagle’s iris, as it is on every Alpine Eagle watch. the subdials, tachymeter scale, and even the date display all feature numerals and texts in Chopard’s bespoke typography — yet another touch to indicate all-encompassing attention to detail from the brand and its co-president, Karl-Friedrich Scheufele. The 44mm-wide and 13.15mm-thick case of the Chopard Alpine Eagle XL Chrono watch is crafted from A223 Lucent Steel, an innovative steel alloy that is hypo-allergenic and robust with truly incomparable brilliance and whiteness achieved through a meticulous recasting process. A223 Lucent Steel responds beautifully to various surface treatments and on the XL Chrono it exhibits a combination of high-polished and intricately brushed elements. The pushers are discreetly integrated into the robust crown guards on the right hand side of the case while the screws securing the bezel are all perfectly aligned with the shape of the watch — again, testifying to the attention to detail all Alpine Eagle references are crafted with, all the way from the very material they are crafted from. The caseback reveals the 310-component Chopard 03.05-C, a self-winding and column wheel-equipped chronograph caliber developed and assembled by Chopard’s watchmaking workshops. With three patented innovations, including a unidirectional gear drive system to prevent energy losses while ensuring rapid winding and a zero-reset mechanism with pivoting hammers and elastic arms for the flyback function, the 03.05-C also boasts a patented vertical clutch system for the smooth and accurate starting of the chronograph. Making it all the more desirable and rare among modern chronographs is a flyback function to allow for the quick stopping, resetting, and restarting of the function at the press of just one button. Fitted with a stop-second feature for to-the-second synchronization with a reference time, the Alpine Eagle XL Chrono is chronometer-certified by the Official Swiss Chronometer Testing Institute — as befits such a technical masterpiece. Already available with an integrated metal bracelet and a leather option, the Chopard Alpine Eagle XL Chrono model is treated to a new look with a supple rubber strap with a pin buckle. Water-resistant, durable and comfortable, this new strap option lends a particularly dynamic look to this sporty chronograph that is water resistant to 100m.
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