The Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso is one of the most iconic watches of all time, especially among enthusiasts. The classic Reverso had a “flip over face” to protect the crystal on the polo grounds, making it one of the earliest “sports watches”, albeit for noble gentlemen. Even today, flipping over the face of a Reverso is a “wow” moment for everyone who witnesses it!
But what to do with the reverse side? The classic Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso had a plain steel back, so engraving and enameling was the “in” thing to do. Then came the Reverso Duoface (called the “Reverso Duo” here in the USA) with a second timezone on the other side. There was even a grande complication with a third calendar face in the case!
Although lots of watches today feature a crystal on the back so the owner can display the movement, this is fairly rare in a Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso. It’s funny – no other watch makes such a display so useful yet it’s still not done by JLC!
This Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso Grande Date 8 Days is exceptional in many ways.
First, let’s get the case out of the way. This is a “grande” Reverso, so it’s much larger than typical. Although 29 x 47 mm doesn’t sound “big”, we find that these wear larger than one would think. The cross-wrist dimension is more like a 42 or 44 mm round case watch. And 12 mm doesn’t sound thick, but it too wears a bit large.
But Jaeger-LeCoultre did a lot with that space. Being the truest manufacture of all the watch world, they created a custom movement just for this piece, including a whopping 8 day power reserve (from a single barrel), complete with a “reserve 8 jours” display to prove it. Then there’s that “grande guichet” (“big date”) in the lower corner, making us wonder where the wheels are kept.
The view from the back is lovely but not all that informative. It’s a hand-winding watch, as are all Reverso models up until the Grande Reverso Night & Day just introduced last month. But the chunky bridges hide just about everything inside. Oh well!
This particular Reverso is on offer from Crown & Caliber for $6,999, which sounds like an excellent price to us. It includes the original box and 2007 papers. It’s a fairly rare and lovely model, and well worth the money!