Tested For You: Adventures With Laventure’s Sous-Marine Bronze
When the word adventure is literally in your brand name you have serious shoes to fill. Luckily, Laventure isn't your average brand.
If you're like me, you probably haven't heard much about Laventure, and there's a reason for it. The Neuchâtel, Switzerland based independent brand has been producing watches for just a few short years, but luckily for founder Clement GAUD, nearly every piece they've made has sold out. Recently, Watchonista recently received the Laventure Sous-Marine in bronze with a blue gradient dial. It's "time" for a test drive.
We begin our story in 2017 when entrepreneurial designer Clement Gaud launched a Kickstarter campaign for his Laventure Marine collection. The original premise of this line was to disrupt the very notion of what 'SWISS MADE' meant to the establishment. Gaud's new brand, Laventure, rattled the status quo by offering a watch made almost entirely in La Chaux-De-Fonds (90% of it to be precise). Blowing through the 60% requirement to use the 'SWISS MADE' moniker.
Since the successful launch of Laventure's Kickstarter campaign, which raised over 201,400 CHF, the brand has now expanded their Marine collection. The new Sous-Marine is a collection of dive watches which could warm the hearts of even the most purist of dive watch enthusiasts. Produced in six models (three in Stainless Steel and three in Bronze) with three dial options (green, blue, or black). Starting at just 2,350 CHF, the Sous-Marine is a watch I just had to know more about.
Testing the Laventure Sous-Marine
The first thing that impressed me was the presentation case. Most micro and independent brands concentrate the bulk of their design and production in the watches themselves. Not Laventure! As you can see from the images, the wooden presentation case is fitted with a foam insert which carefully protects the already robust watch and allows for slots to hold all three included straps (two leather and a rubber strap) and a very well made spring bar tool.
The Laventure Sous-Marine is a purpose-built dive watch made to withstand whatever you can throw at it. Sized at a respectable 41mm, the Sous-Marine sat comfortably on my 7.5" wrists. Water resistant to 200m (660ft), the Sous-Marine is more than capable of handling a dip in the neighborhood pool or perhaps accompanying you on your next vacation. The bronze case on our test model started developing a patina within a few days of use. Nice to see that Laventure went with a pure bronze instead of a custom alloy. Bronzo fans everywhere can rejoice in the unique aging each Sous-Marine is sure to develop.
Speaking of cases, let's talk about the Sous-Marine's case for a moment. Unlike other micro brands, Laventure has paid meticulous detail to every element of the three-part case. We'll start first with the main case, the sides and lugs received horizontal and vertical brushing, while the top and bottom of the crown protector is polished. The sharp unidirectional bezel functioned smoothly and was extraordinarily precise with 120 clicks on full rotation. Furthermore, beveled edges lend a refined look reminiscent of divers costing many thousands of dollars more.
On the wrist, the Laventure Sous-Marine was remarkably wearable. The blue gradient dial had impressive legibility thanks to its sandwich dial construction. The hand stamped hour, minute, and second's hands are all hand stamped in La Chaux-de-Fonds, again a touch unseen at this price point. The "Superdome" crystal provided a nice vintage touch and refracted light remarkably well under water. Nearly everyone I showed the Laventure Sous-Marine to came off with a positive impression.
The sandblasted and highly polished caseback is stamped with a relief of a small exploration submarine and surface ship. Hidden behind is a top grade ETA 2824-2 movement. One of the most popular ETA automatics, the 2824-2 is a total workhorse. Beating at 4hz and boasting a power reserve of 38 hours, the 2824-2 movement in the Sous-Marine is sure to handle even the most arduous of tasks.
I very much enjoyed my time with the Laventure Sous-Marine. This well-designed diver has features and finishing not seen in almost any other diver at this price point. Priced at 2,350 CHF in stainless steel and just 300 CHF more (2,650 CHF) for the bronze version. As of press time, most of the pieces are sold out. However, we are very much looking forward to seeing what else Clement Gaud and his team at Laventure have up (or under) their sleeves!
(Photography by Liam O'Donnell)