I had the pleasure of wearing a Maurice Lacroix Pontos Reserve de Marche for a week. With its style, elegance and its quality finishes designed also with budgets in mind, the Pontos range is resolutely focused on accessibility – in line with today’s market demands.
Its new, rounded steel case is now 41 mm thick; that is, slightly larger than before yet it adapts easily to the wrist. Such comfort! The great legibility of this piece – a true trademark of the Pontos collection – is noticed from the first handling. Looking at it more closely, one realizes with every detail that the brand has spared no efforts and has approached this model with the utmost care.
The slight increase in size as well as its balanced proportions give the piece an added value: class. The light and polished sphere highlights the bezel with its brushed edge. The same alternation between brushed and polished can also be seen on its softened horns with a staggered "eagle beak" profile, a design intended to fit the wrist better.
With their somehow double levels on each side, the horns embody precisely the identity the brand whose Manufacture is located in Saignelégier (in the Swiss Jura) wishes to communicate. Fun fact: another trait of the Maurice Lacroix DNA is the encrusted 'M' on most of its bracelets.
You might think that the screwed crown, which is secured by a 10-atmosphere seal, could mean this is strictly a sports watch. However, the crown protector is harmoniously integrated in the middle and gives the whole a true touch of distinction, further enhanced by the contrast of the finishes. The watch is therefore perfect for smarter occasions too. The dial features steel double-facetted applique indexes. Glimpses of light escape from each movement of the hand, as well as from the hours and minutes hands, which are also luminescent, thus allowing for optimum legibility. Perfectly proportioned, they go around the dial with grace: the former concentrated in the central circle – a typical feature of the Pontos collection – and the latter sweeping over the minutes on the outer circle. The power reserve indicator is at 8 o'clock and its semi-circle has the same facets as the indexes, thus adding an extra touch of chic. It fits in harmoniously within the spherical bezel. Well thought out and well executed!
There is one last detail that contributes to propelling this hit piece all the way to the top of its range, as proof that perceived value remains at the heart of Maurice Lacroix's primary concerns –the double push button deployment clasp. It undeniably makes the piece more comfortable to wear while the circular graining strengthens the general impression of quality.
Frankly, at 2,290 CHF the level of finish Reserve of Marche features is rare. As for the rest of the offer, you can choose among 11 different versions and five dial colours, and between a three-row metal strap or a calfskin strap in a wide range of colors. The basic edition starts at 1,690 CHF. To top it off, these Pontos pieces host in their case a self-winding mechanical calibre – the ML 143, a personalised interpretation of an ETA 2897 base movement renowned for its imperturbable reliability.
This timepiece, at the crossroads of elegance and functionality, and half way between aesthetics and chronometry, claims its identity with an "M" on its dial as well as on the profile of its bracelet, which reminds us of a finely stylized trident. A safe, accessible bet far away from pretentious alternatives. A companion for life decidedly at ease in all circumstances...