2021 is a special year for Jaeger-LeCoultre as it celebrates the 90th Anniversary of an icon – The Reverso. Over the years, we’ve seen numerous iterations of the Reverso – some highly complex, some highly arty. Up until the early 90’s, the Reverso remained a simple, time-only watch. It was only in 1991 (Post the quartz crisis and the during the complicated watchmaking boom), Jaeger-LeCoultre started incorporating mechanical complications into the Reverso – starting with the Reverso Soixantième. This watch featured a power reserve and date display and was the first with a sapphire crystal caseback. Although the Reverso case and its shaped movement had not initially been designed for complications, the Soixantième revealed its full potential, unleashing a sequence of pieces that gave new visual expression to the great watchmaking complications. The Soixantième was followed by the Reverso Tourbillon in 1993 – the Manufacture’s first wristwatch tourbillon. In 1994, Jaeger-LeCoultre debuted the Reverso Répétition Minutes – the first time the Maison had miniaturised a minute repeater for a wristwatch, and the world’s first rectangular minute repeater movement. In 1996, La Grande Maison introduced the Reverso Chronographe Rétrograde, with an intricate display on the reverse side that solved the problem of how to arrange the chronograph counters within a rectangular frame. This was followed two years later by the Reverso Géographique and, coinciding with the Millennium, the Reverso Quantième Perpétuel. In 2001, Jaeger-LeCoultre marked the completion of another decade in the Reverso story with the Septantième. Its movement, Calibre 879, offered an 8-day power reserve – almost unheard-of at the time. And now, nine decades after the Reverso was born, La Grande Maison introduces a new alliance of complications.
Today, nine decades after the Reverso was born, Jaeger-LeCoultre presents the Reverso Tribute Nonantième: a timepiece which gives a completely new visual expression to an alliance of several classical complications. The watch is presented in a gorgeous pink gold case measuring 49.4 x 29.9 mm. It is powered by an entirely new in-house calibre – Calibre 826, contains 230 parts and can last up to 42 hours when fully wound. The silver sunray-brushed dial is contrasted perfectly by the pink gold case along with striking applied golden indexes and Dauphine hands. On the upper half of the dial, just below 12 o’clock there is a large date display, framed by an applied filet of pink gold that echoes the rectangular shape of the dial and case, while the lower half of the dial, features a moonphase display – set within a circle formed by the small seconds counter.
As you flip the watch over, an entirely new visual expression of some of watchmaking’s most familiar complications take centre stage. The solid pink-gold caseback is dominated by two round apertures of different sizes, arranged like a figure-eight and encircled by gadroons that echo the rectilinear gadroons on the upper and lower edges of the case. Here, the small upper aperture displays a semi-jumping digital hour indication. Seen for the first time in a Reverso, this complication recalls digital displays developed by the Manufacture for wristwatches in the 1930s. The large aperture on the other hand which sits below the hour, minutes, is displayed on a rotating disc that is partially concealed by a three-quarter plate lacquered in vivid blue – in the Atelier des Métiers Rares® – and sprinkled with tiny golden stars to depict the night sky. Within a small circle at the centre, an applied golden sun and moon, pass above a horizon, to indicate night and day. In the semi-circle below the horizon, a JL logo is set on a sunray-pattern background.
Limited to 190 pieces, the new Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso Tribute Nonantième is worn on a black alligator strap that goes exceptionally well with the rest of the watch and is available exclusively at Jaeger-LeCoultre boutiques.