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Four Significant Luxury Watches from Baselworld 2014

James D. Malcolmson

Maurice Lacroix Masterpiece Gravity

Over the last decade, Maurice Lacroix has made the journey from classical Swiss designs to ultramodern ones and back again. It has also made a foray into the watch industry’s luxury sector and subsequently returned to its roots in the moderate price ranges. This time, however, it seems to have acquired something on the way. The new Masterpiece Gravity is a remarkable-looking timepiece with a state-of-the-art silicon escapement for the astonishingly low price of less than $14,000. It does not take an especially astute observer to note that the design is clearly derivative of Audemars Piguet’s series of openwork timepieces beginning with the Tradition d’Excellence Cabinet #5. Borrowing of designs is a very old part of the Swiss watch industry; the more important lesson comes from Maurice Lacroix’s ability to execute the watch at such an attractive price. It is a lesson that Swiss companies, which have long relied on their sense of design to justify their high prices, would do well to heed. (www.mauricelacroix.com)

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