Up Close with the Jaeger-LeCoultre Grande Reverso 1931 Seconde Centrale (with Original Photos & Price)

Introduced at SIHH 2015, the white gold Grande Reverso 1931 Seconde Centrale is the first vintage-style Reverso 1931 with a self-winding movement, the calibre 966A.

First unveiled four years ago, the Grande Reverso 1931 is one of Jaeger-LeCoultre‘s most successful products, combining the classic swivelling case with dials modelled on vintage Reverso models, including the Rouge and tropical dial Chocolate. The latest addition to the 1931 line-up is the Grande Reverso 1931 Seconde Centrale, the first model with an automatic movemen.

While the other Reverso 1931 watches are manually-wound, the Seconde Centrale is powered by the self-winding calibre 966A. A smallish movement with a 38 hour power reserve, its size limited by the fact that it’s a round movement mounted in a square holder to fit the rectangular case. In any case the movement is hidden under the plain white gold case back that is ready for personalisation.

More unusual is the centre seconds, a rare feature for a Reverso. It’s modelled on a vintage Reverso from the 1930s with a similar dial, with long baton indices for the hours and a railway minute track with five minute markings.

The hour markers are poudré, or powdered, meaning they are created using paint containing gold powder, giving the markers a granular finish with a bit of sparkle. Because the golden tone of the powdered markers also approximates the aged radium on vintage watches, poudré markings are popular on vintage-inspired watches like the Tiffany & Co. CT60.

Measuring 46.8mm long and 27.4mm wide, the Seconde Centrale is identical in size to its hand-wound cousins, except that the case is slightly thicker at 9.2mm because of the extra height of the automatic movement (the hand-wound models are 7.2mm high). Its case is made of white gold, making it significantly pricier than the steel equivalents.

Available only in JLC boutiques, the Grande Reverso 1931 Seconde Centrale costs US$20,100 or S$28,600.

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