It may be out of a feeling of neglect, or perhaps just a natural progression of release cycles, but as part of Geneva Watch Days, Maurice Lacroix has just announced four new watches for its Pontos line. I say “neglect” because it really seems like the Aikon has been hogging the spotlight lately. I get it — the Aikon is modern and flashy, and it’s got all those bright, fun colors to choose from. But what about tradition and classic styling? That’s what the Maurice Lacroix Pontos is all about and has been since its introduction in 2000, and that’s what kept getting shoved by the wayside in the name of “fun.” No longer! The new Pontos S Chronograph in two colors and two new Pontos Day Date models (including a limited edition) are here. While the Maurice Lacroix Pontos line is the brand’s standard bearer of traditional watch design, the watches are anything but mundane.
First up is a new colorway of the Pontos Day Date. The 41mm stainless steel case is just 11mm-thick and features the unique stepped lug that defines the Pontos collection, with a set of sweeping crown guards that have a slight curve to them — if nothing else, the case should sway you, as it’s a thing of beauty. Powered by the ML143 (based on the Sellita SW220), the dial features a 12 o’clock day and a 6 o’clock date (Is it just me, or is the font on the day wheel awfully small? And why is it in a serif font when everything else is so clean and contemporary?). Despite having a pull-out crown, the watch achieves 100m water resistance. There are really only two new things about this model, both on the dial. The dial still features the same applied indices, recessed portions emerging from the day and date windows, and perfectly-proportioned lumed hands, but is now offered in a lovely blue. Completely new to the Pontos Day Date line, though, is the contrasting, sandblasted chapter ring, which is recessed to the same level as those other portions. The watch comes with a blue nylon strap featuring a butterfly deployant clasp, a steel bracelet, or both. While there’s nothing revolutionary here, with the popularity of blue, this new dial is a no-brainer that will likely outsell all the other Pontos Day Dates.
Bringing a bit of character to the Pontos Day Date range, the Pontos Day Date Khaki Limited Edition features a black DLC case and a deep green sunburst dial with matching day and date wheels; the specs and design are otherwise identical to the other new Pontos Day Date (look at the day and date font, isn’t that better?). Maybe brand’s just aren’t brave enough to commit to black DLC bracelets, but as is often the case with black watches, this model comes on a strap: a quick-release green nylon with a leather backing and a matching black DLC butterfly deployant buckle. Limited to 1000 pieces, Maurice Lacroix has described this watch as intended for an “urban landscape,” and while I tend to roll my eyes at such copy, in this case, I think it’s spot on. There’s an undeniable tacti-cool chic (not words you often hear together), with the matte black finish of the case creating tension with the more traditional case silhouette and the radiant green dial keeping things in balance.
Rounding out the Pontos releases is the new Pontos S Chronograph. Offered in a blue or a panda dial, the new S designation brings a sportier look, with a scratch-resistant ceramic tachymeter bezel, additional lume, and a new dial layout and design. The 43mm-wide case features the signature Pontos stepped lugs, button pushers, 100m water resistance, and measures 15mm-thick, which is reasonable for the automatic ML112 caliber (believed to be an ETA 7750 and visible through a display caseback). The movement is a change for the Pontos chrono, and as such exchanges the 6 o’clock date of older Pontos chronos for a 3 o’clock day-date display. The chronograph subdials, too, are a bit more modern, with contrasting red accents, which are complemented by the 10-second markings on the interior chapter ring. Furthering its utility, the new S Chonograph features Super-LumiNova on the hour plots and hands. Both models are available on either a matching nylon strap with butterfly buckle, steel bracelet, or both. This release is in line with a lot of others that have come out in recent years like the Zenith Chronomaster, which has used a ceramic bezel to sport things up. Notwithstanding existing Aikon models, this fills a gap for Maurice Lacroix by finally adding a sports chronograph to the catalog.
There’s a bit of something for everyone here, isn’t there? While the chronographs have may feel a bit too familiar, the stepped Pontos case lets them do their own thing. But it’s the Day Dates that truly intrigue with plenty of depth and contrast to the dials, two great colors, and a balanced 12-and-6 day-date display. Here I was starting to think that Maurice Lacroix had put all its marbles in the Aikon basket, forsaking the rest of its collection — turns out the brand was just slow-rolling us. The Maurice Lacroix Pontos S Chronographs are available on strap for $3,250 USD, on bracelet for $3,350 USD, or with both for $3,500 USD. The Maurice Lacroix Pontos Day Date is available on strap for $1,900 USD, on bracelet for $2,000 USD, or with both for $2,150 USD. The Maurice Lacroix Pontos Day Date Khaki Limited edition is available for $2,150 USD and limited to 1000 pieces. For more information, please visit the Maurice Lacroix website.