Wearing the traditional black-and-red colors of the Swiss-based bike maker BMC, the new Louis Erard La Sportive Edition Limitee BMC automatic chronograph sports all the usual features that are offered by the cal. ETA Valjoux 7750-powered timekeepers and even somehow manages to look original (especially when compared to the monotonous flow of 7750-based chronos that we meet on a daily basis) and even desirable.
Thanks to the choice of the movement that comes without any visible modifications, the BMC Edition offers the traditional tri-compax dial layout with the inevitable small seconds indicator at 9 o’clock, as well as a 30-minute and a 12-hour chronograph counters at 12 and 6 hours respectively, and the day/date window at 3 o’clock.
However, on closer inspection, the La Sportive Edition BMC actually looks attractive and, at least to a certain degree, original (although the chosen color scheme is anything but new being exploited by just about every brand dealing in “sporty” timekeepers.)
The main thing that attracts attention is, of course, the tachymeter scale on its rather thin bezel. Since Louis Erard’s partner sells bicycles, not MotoGP motorbikes, the tachymeter is graduated with not so overwhelming single and double-digit numerals but adds a modest “x 10 km/h” inscription, which basically means that the tachymeter is still virtually useless when it comes to measuring the speed of a normal bike.
Covered with a domed, scratch-resistant and anti-reflective sapphire crystal, the bezel can also be used as a simple timer: the scale on its flange can be rotated with an extra crown, which is placed at 10 hours. Although the position is not particularly comfortable for a normal right-handed man, this is the de facto industry standard for this kind of mechanisms.
However, the main setting crown, as well as the elongated chronograph push-pieces at 2 and 4 o’clock, looks like they were simply outsourced from another model and then treated with black PVD coating to match the matte black body. Judging by the photos, all main elements of the dial (including the hands, Arabic numerals and the triangle on the flange) are covered with light-grey Superluminova.
Presented at the last month’s Baselworld 2012 trade show, the new Louis Erard La Sportive Edition Limitee BMC will, as the name suggests, be produced in a limited lot of just 200 pieces.
Build Quality: 5/5
Overall Legibility: 5/5
Nighttime Legibility: 5/5
Value for Money: 3.5/5
Overall Rating: 4/5
Photos: Louis Erard
Louis Erard La Sportive Edition Limitee BMC specification
Price: CHF 2050 (MSRP, approximately $2250 USD at the time of writing of this review)
Movement: Automatic, Caliber ETA Valjoux 7750, Swiss Made
Number of jewels: 25
Movement frequency: 28,800 vph
Power reserve: 46 hours
Functions: Hours, minutes, small seconds, date, day of the week, chronograph
Case: Black PVD stainless steel
Size: 42.00 mm
Dial: Black, with red accents
Numerals: Arabic, luminous
Hour markers: Luminous
Water resistance: 100 meters
Strap: Black rubber strap with black PVD-treated steel folding clasp
Crystal: Sapphire, antireflective
Back: Solid, engraved
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Bought my first mechanical watch in 1986 and it took me ten more years to realize that I have a problem: at some point in time watches became my passion. Well, it could be worse.