Back to the Past: Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso Ultra Thin 1948


Jaeger-LeCoultre Grande Reverso Ultra-Thin 1948The iconic Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso has had many incarnations since its debut as a watch for polo players in 1931. One of the most recent is the Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso Ultra-Thin 1948, a classically elegant watch that revives the look of the Reverso model that heralded the style of the 1950s.

The Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso Ultra-Thin 1948 is distinguished from other Reverso models by the inscription “Fabriqué en Suisse” (“made in Switzerland”) on the dial, just below the Jaeger-LeCoultre logo, a nod to the 1948 original. The traditional Reverso swiveling case, with its Art Deco-inspired rectangular shape and distinctive gadroons, is made of stainless steel. True to its name, the watch is very slender, just 7.3 mm thick despite its contemporary large dimensions (46.8 x 27.4 mm).  The back surface of the case bears Jaeger-LeCoultre’s “1000 Hours Control” motto, referring to the brand’s intensive quality control testing, but is otherwise a blank canvas for its owner to personalize. The silvered, grained dial has blue, stamped hour indices and blue-facetted baton-shaped hands. A rectangular subdial for small seconds is placed at 6 o’clock.

This ultra-thin watch has a correspondingly slim movement, Jaeger-LeCoultre’s Caliber 822/2, which is made entirely in-house at the brand’s manufacture in Le Sentier, Switzerland. The manual-wound movement is only 2.94 mm thick, with a frequency of 21,600 vph and a power reserve of 45 hours. It is made up of 114 parts, including 19 jewels and boasts hand-decorated patterns on several elements. The Jaeger-LeCoultre Grande Reverso Ultra Thin 1948 is fitted with a matte black alligator strap with steel pin buckle and will be available exclusively at Jaeger-LeCoultre boutiques, priced at $9,450.

Jaeger-LeCoultre Grande Reverso Ultra-Thin 1948
The Jaeger-LeCoultre Grande Reverso Ultra-Thin 1948 (above) and its movement, Caliber 822/2 (below)

Jaeger-LeCoultre Calibre 822This article was originally published on May 16, 2014 and has been updated.

3 Responses to “Back to the Past: Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso Ultra Thin 1948”

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  1. Sang,

    The article says two things:
    – the dial markings have a historic reference in the french line of “Fabriqué en Suisse” (as some older models had, but is no longer the case these days; my Grande Calendar says “SWISS MADE” at 6’oclock and that’s it);
    – the movement is made entirely in-house.

    Neither of these things implies in the least that this watch is more made in Switzerland than any other watch they make.

    Regarding the differences, they are pretty clear to me: the dial, markings and hands have a different colour (and the 1931 has lume); the presence of small seconds on the 1948. The case size is the same.
    Look them up on JLC’s website for more details, but I think that covers it.

    Cheers!

    Reply
  2. Sang Fung

    What is the difference between this 1948 and the tribute to 1931 model? And why say Manufactured in Switzerland when all JLC watches are supposedly made in the same country?????

    Reply
    • Both are a tribute to the iconic Reverso. The dials are quite different as well as the hands. For the other specs, such as size of the case, etc. check their website, I don’t know them by heart.
      Regarding your second question, the particularity of this dial is that it is a tribute to the one made in 1948 and it is written in French (which is not the case anymore). All the JLC watches are indeed made in the Manufacture in the Vallée de Joux.

      Reply
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