Hands-On with the Laurent Ferrier Classic Moon

Hands-On with the Laurent Ferrier Classic Moon

This year at Watches and Wonders, Laurent Ferrier unveiled two versions of the all-new Classic Moon: an annual calendar moonphase utilizing the brand’s existing ‘Classic’ case design. Available in blue and silver dial configurations, the Classic Moon embraces late-19th, early-20th century design while incorporating modern cues that have become quintessentially LF.

Laurent Ferrier Classic Moon: Specs and Facts

Laurent Ferrier Classic Moon configurations

The Classic Moon is available in two configurations. The blue config features a stainless steel case, slate-blue opaline dial, and a combination of white and powder blue accents. The silver config features an 18k red gold case, vertical satin-brushed silver dial, and a combination of red, dark grey, and petrol blue accents. Both are 40mm in diameter and 12.9mm thick.

Laurent Ferrier Classic Moon in Blue

Laurent Ferrier’s first watch — the Classic Tourbillon Double Hairspring — ushered in this ‘Classic’ case design in 2010. It also won Best Men’s Watch at GPHG that year.

The case’s domed bezel, flowing curved lugs, and generous polishing are met with a distinctive onion-shaped crown at 3 o’clock. The crown sets the time and date while two flush pushers at ~8 and ~10 o’clock set the calendar and moonphase (demonstrated below). Yes, this is a push-pull crown, and no, you shouldn’t swim with this watch. It features 30 meters of water resistance.

Laurent Ferrier CLassic Moon Pusher Demonstration

Just above the LF branding, you’ll see a beveled cutout with two calendar displays: day and month. If you’re familiar with Laurent Ferrier, you’ll recognize this style of cutout. It looks like a mirrored version of the date aperture on the brand's 'Sport' models. On the silver dial, this opaline cutout contrasts the dial’s vertical brushing. On the blue dial, the texture is consistent with the rest of the dial.

Laurent Ferrier Classic Moon

At six o’clock, you’ll find a double-display moonphase that also functions as a sub-seconds dial. The aventurine glass base is hand engraved and painted to feature five stars and two moons. After lume is applied to the painted sections, the moons are re-engraved to exhibit dark craters, even when the lume is shining. This attention to detail is nothing short of amazing.

Above this miniature work of art sits a translucent blue enamel bridge (shaped almost like sunglasses), illustrating the moon phases in both hemispheres. I know this is the “specs and facts” section, but I must say: this is one of my favorite new moon phases in some time. The art style chosen for the hand-engraved stars is just so charming, as is this enamel bridge.

Laurent Ferrier Classic Moon

Unlike the Patek Philippe 5396 – an unavoidable comparison here – the Laurent Ferrier Classic Moon features a pointer date complication: a long central arrow hand indicating the date via a perimeter date track. Numerals one through 31 surround a railroad minute track, which surrounds elongated Roman numerals indicative of late-19th and early-20th century dial design.

Laurent Ferrier caliber LF126.02

Visible through a sapphire caseback (thank goodness) is Laurent Ferrier’s caliber LF126.02: an adaptation of the caliber LF126.01. This base caliber was introduced in Laurent Ferrier’s 2018 Galet Annual Calendar: a watch that would go on to win Best Men’s Complication at GPHG that year (I’m sensing a theme here).

The hand-wound movement is neatly displayed with three bridges and a balance cock, all featuring Côtes de Genève decoration. This vertical pattern contrasts the baseplate’s circular perlage just underneath. Above the balance is a beautifully-finished power reserve indicator: a nice touch that, admittedly, I wonder how much I would actually use if I owned this watch. The movement’s 3Hz beat rate allows for an ample 80 hour power reserve.

My Thoughts on the Laurent Ferrier Classic Moon

The Laurent Ferrier Classic Moon is a masterclass in fusion between traditional and modern watchmaking. Of course, given Mr. Ferrier’s background, traditional watchmaking is deeply-ingrained in his brand’s DNA. This is evident in the Classic Moon’s complications (yes, the annual calendar wristwatch is just a few decades old, but think of triple calendars and even QPs in the 1920s), presentation of said complications, elongated Roman numerals, hand-finished movement decoration, etc. Still, Ferrier adds his own unique, decidedly modern design cues that spice up the traditional canvas. For example, the use of powder blue dial text on a dark blue dial feels very modern. I’d say the same about a translucent blue enamel moonphase bridge – you won’t find that on a 100-year-old watch. The striking and perfectly-perpendicular lines of the Côtes de Genève and bridge borders present as very modern, although I’m sure there are vintage parallels.

As a young watch enthusiast, modern interpretations of traditional complications intrigue me. Laurent Ferrier, the man, has once again created a marvel of high watchmaking, paying respect to the horological history he helped build while incorporating his own modern touches. 

Bonus: Laurent Ferrier Sport Auto 'On Track' for Only Watch

Laurent Ferrier Sport Auto On Track Only Watch 2023 2024

When Mr. Ferrier sat in during our meeting, I asked what watch he was wearing. I'm very glad I did so; he handed me the one-of-one Sport Auto 'On Track' for the Only Watch 2023 auction (now Only Watch 2024). While the watch looks familiar if you know the Sport Auto, its coloration is all-new and deeply personal to Mr. Ferrier. 

During his 37-year career at Patek Philippe, Mr. Ferrier pursued his dream of professional racing. In 1979, he finished in third place at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, right behind another familiar name in the watch world: Paul Newman. To this day, the 24 Hours of Le Mans track (Circuit de la Sarthe) features alternating blue and yellow curbs in honor of the L’Automobile Club de l’Ouest (ACO). Many sections of the track also include a green outline. We see this motif surrounding the pavement-like gray dial of the Sport Auto 'On Track'. The sub-seconds dial also features an imposed "OW" to signify its distinction for the Only Watch auction.

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