Black magic: The Chopard Alpine Eagle Japan Limited Edition Black magic: The Chopard Alpine Eagle Japan Limited Edition

Black magic: The Chopard Alpine Eagle Japan Limited Edition

Fergus Nash
  • Chopard’s Alpine Eagle honours Japan with a blacked-out Shikkoku dial.
  • The sapphire display caseback has also been tinted a dark grey.
  • To further chase simplicity and zen, the date display has been removed.

After the Chopard Alpine Eagle was introduced in 2019, putting a contemporary twist on a 1970s design, it quickly became one of the go-to examples of beautiful and unique dials. Inspired by an eagle’s iris, its gentle swirl and and rich texture deepens the effect of any colour applied to it. Interfering with that effect must be an intentional and thought-out process, and the new Chopard Alpine Eagle Japan Limited Edition sacrifices its blazing dial for one of monochromatic zen.

The concept of Shikkoku is that of the deepest black, similar to the void of onyx or black lacquer finishes. It’s said to be a symbol of nature, with the absence of colour representing a tranquil simplicity and peaceful harmony. Of course, this watch isn’t like the Haldimann H9 Reduction where the dial is completely obscured, instead Chopard’s Shikkoku dial goes for a cohesive wash of the darkest grey, muting that Alpine Eagle texture along with its logo, indices, and hands. After the stamped brass dial is coated, the applied hour markers and the hands are filled in with a charcoal shade of Super-LumiNova, so that you can still achieve some after-dark visibility. Anti-reflective coating has been applied to the sapphire crystal, preventing any interruptions of the monochromatic mastery. You may also notice the lack of any date display, simplifying further and ensuring symmetry.

Keita Inagaki, the Japanese Rugby Union star

As for the case, the Alpine Eagle architecture is as excellent as ever. Made from Chopard’s signature Lucent Steel, the material is re-smelted at high temperatures to further purify it, resulting in a steel that is 50% more scratch resistant as well as displaying a brighter lustre than normal. It’s allowed to shine in a mixture of vertically brushed and polished surfaces, embodying the spirit of a vintage integrated bracelet watch with contemporary flair. The 41mm diameter and 9.7mm thickness give it a brilliant trade-off between comfort and wrist presence, while the 100m water resistance allows it to fulfil its promises as a sports watch.

Behind a tinted sapphire caseback, sending the movement into the same grey wash as the dial, you can peer in at the Chopard 01.15-C. This calibre is a variation upon the 01.01-C which normally powers the Alpine Eagle range, removing the date complication altogether. Even with a dark tint, you can see the detailed finishing and careful design of the movement well. It beats at a standard 4Hz, with a generous 60-hour power reserve and COSC-certified chronometer accuracy.

The Chopard Alpine Eagle Japan Limited Edition pricing and availability:

The Chopard Alpine Eagle Japan Limited Edition is only available in Japan, with 100 pieces made. Price: ¥2,156,000 / US$15,300

Brand Chopard
Model Alpine Eagle Japan Limited Edition
Case Dimensions 41mm x 9.7mm
Case Material Lucent Steel
Water Resistance 100m
Crystal(s) Sapphire
Dial Shikkoku black
Strap Integrated bracelet
Movement Chopard 01.15-C
Power Reserve 60 hours
Availability Limited to 100 pieces, Japanese exclusive
Price ¥2,156,000 / US$15,300