Cover story: Jaeger-Lecoultre

Polaris Geographic WT

CASE : satin-brushed stainless steel, polished lug angles, sapphire crystal back, water-reisistant to 100m


MOVEMENT : mechanical self-winding (Caliber 936A/1, 40h power reserve)

FUNCTIONS : hours, minutes, seconds, date, dual time, world time, power-reserve display

DIAL : snailed, grained and opaline, luminescent white numerals STRAP : black alligator leather, folding clasp


Bringing a legendary collection* back to life is no easy undertaking and few brands manage to do so successfully. By injecting fresh dynamism into the Memovox Polaris born in the mid-1960s, Jaeger- LeCoultre has revived not only a model, but an entire collection – notably including alarm, automatic as well as chronograph plus world-time versions, now joined by the world-timeonly Polaris Geographic WT limited edition featured in this article and available exclusively in Jaeger-LeCoultre boutiques. This latest model was symbolically unveiled last summer during a press trip to Sicily in the company of an equally emblematic ambassador. Friend of the brand, actor Jean-Marc Barr, joined the launch to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the cult film The Big Blue, returning for the first time to the filming location, Taormina*. The name of this picturesque village is nonetheless not among the 24 cities representing the time zones on the inner bezel ring, adjustable via the crown at 10 o’clock. The white asterisk preceding some of them means they have adopted the summer/winter time adjustment system and indicates their off-set local time. The day/night disk eliminates any risk of mistaking what time of day on the other side of the world is referred to by the watch display. The dial exudes a blend of functionality and active elegance, with three types of decoration distinguishing between the zones : snailed, grained and opaline. The dual time zone appears at 6 o’clock, the date at 2 o’clock and the power reserve at 9 o’clock. The smoky blue dial is a contemporary first for Jaeger- LeCoultre, having previously featured in graded shades exclusively on the 1970 Memovox Polaris II. The original case has however been entirely redesigned : tauter lugs enable a smoother fit on the wrist, their angles have been polished, satin-brushing has been applied throughout and watch product director Nicolas Elbaz points out : “We kept the glassbox type concept, while adding a bezel to refine the design while maintaining a sporty and masculine appearance.” Finally, the automatic Manufacture movement is based on the solid foundations of the famous Master Geographic, technically improved with the latest advancements designed to increase reliability. Purists will also note the different power-reserve display featuring a reversed hand direction. A wonderful inspiration to world travelers.

Brice Lechevalier is editor-in-chief of GMT and Skippers, which he co-founded in 2000 and 2001 respectively. He has also been CEO of WorldTempus since it joined the GMT Publishing stable, of which he is director and joint shareholder. In 2012 he created the Geneva Watch Tour, and he has been an advisor to the Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève since 2011. Also closely involved in sailing, he has published the magazine of the Société Nautique de Genève since 2003, and was one of the founders of the SUI Sailing Awards in 2009 and the Concours d’Elégance for motor boats at the Cannes Yachting Festival in 2015.

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