Inspired by the iconic Memovox Polaris watch from 1968, the new Jaeger-LeCoultre Polaris collection (unveiled at the 2018 Salon International De La Haute Horlogerie in Geneva) has an initial release of five models with one limited edition piece that pays tribute to the 50th anniversary of its namesake.
Taking on the spirit of the original iconic timepiece and applying it to the man of today, the collection comprises a three-hand automatic, a chronograph and a chronograph world time, as well as two models with a stronger vintage feel: the Jaeger-LeCoultre Polaris Date and the Jaeger-LeCoultre Polaris Memovox.
In terms of design aesthetics, the look is contemporary – sporty but elegant. The dial combines a mixture of finishings on three concentric circles.
There’s a Memovox Polaris-inspired center with a sunray finish, graining on the outer circle with the hours and minutes, and an opaline finish on the rotating inner bezel.
You’ll get great visibility in low light as the hands are large and filled with Super-LumiNova. In two of the models, the Super-LumiNova is in vintage vanilla as homage to the look of Tritium on the original Memovox Polaris.
While historically black, the new Jaeger-LeCoultre Polaris comes with a black or ocean blue dial. There are new cases for this collection, one with a combination of brushed and hand-polished surfaces. The large crowns, inspired from the 1968 model are redesigned for a better grip.
The back of three pieces show off the high watchmaking manufacture movements with an oscillating weight featuring the emblematic Jaeger-LeCoultre logo.There’s also a new three-link metal bracelet. For those who prefer straps, it’s interchangeable for both alligator and calfskin. As always, all mechanical movements are made in-house.
Here’s a look at the timepieces:
Polaris Automatic: Two-Crown Simplicity
This features the iconic two crowns, one for time setting and one for the inner rotating bezel. The inner rotating bezel simplifies the act of tracking elapsed time. The dual-crown layout is unique to the Jaeger-LeCoultre Polaris collection.
Polaris Chronograph In Steel: In-House Chronograph Caliber
The 42mm Jaeger-LeCoultre Polaris Chronograph is the sportiest of the new line. It is equipped with a tachymeter bezel where the tachymeter scale allows you to determine your speed over a fixed distance.The pushers of the chronograph have been redesigned for a better grip and the thin bezel help for maximum readability.
Polaris Chronograph In Rose Gold: Timing Made Elegant
The only current model available in precious metal (rose gold) with an anthracite dial and an oscillating weight in rose gold.
Polaris Chronograph WT: Perfect Traveller
This timepiece has an in-house chronograph and the useful world time complication. It has two chronograph pushers with an additional crown at 10 o’clock to control the rotating city disc.
This allows you to set to the city you are in and immediately see the time in 23 other cities around the world. It also has a generous 44mm case which enhances its readability. The watch is less than 13mm thick with a titanium case.
Polaris Date: Inspired Vintage
This timepiece uses the same design codes as the original – vanilla Super-LumiNova, the triangle along with trapezoidal indices mixed with four Arabic numbers, railway track for the minutes and date at three o’clock.
The case features a glass box where the crystal is raised from the case, evoking its vintage inspiration. The case back is closed with an engraving of a scuba diver, which is similar to the engraving on the inner case back of the 1968 model. It’s also water resistant to 200 meters.
Polaris Memovox: Rebirth of an icon
A limited edition of 1,000 pieces, this timepiece has a special alarm function made famous by the 1968 Memovox Polaris watch. This 50th anniversary timepiece has a three-crown design – one for setting the alarm (top), one for the inner rotating bezel (middle) and one for setting the time (bottom).
With a dial that reminds you of the 1968 original – vanilla Super-LumiNova, trapezoidal indices mixed with four Arabic numbers – the triangle in the dial center works as the alarm indicator.
The Jaeger-LeCoultre Calibre 956 features the striking mechanism with a gong, along with the central seconds and instant-jump date-change system. Something of interest, this caliber is a direct descendant of the first automatic alarm watch movement created by Jaeger-LeCoultre in the 1950s.