Maurice Lacroix’s updated Aikon collection was only introduced in 2016, and since that time, from the initial quartz models, a full bodied line-up has emerged, incorporating automatics, chronographs, skeletons and even the whimsically strange Aikon Automatic Mercury.
Now a new extension has been introduced in the form of the Aikon Venturer, a diving watch that is certainly a logical addition, making good use of the signature case and bezel design of the Aikon collection, that was itself derived from the wildly successful Calypso in the 1990’s.
The new Aikon Venturer has all the standard specifications that one will expect from a diving watch – a unidirectional bezel for timing, a running seconds hand (necessary to indicate that the watch is working before one starts diving) and a robust water resistance of 300 metres. On that last point, it must be said that the earlier Aikon Automatics were no slouch when it came to water resistance, being rated to 200 metres. The new Aikon Venturer though takes it that bit further to 300 metres, touching the baseline for consideration as a serious diving watch.
With these basics covered, it is the details of the Aikon Venturer that mark it out. The six rider tabs on the bezel of the Aikon Automatic (Maurice Lacroix calls it the 6-arm bezel), a signature design detail in this watch, have been preserved on the diving bezel of the Aikon Venturer. In this case however, they have morphed from an aesthetic detail in the former to a technical one in the latter as well, as their inclusion has the benefit of allowing the wearer to grip and turn the bezel more easily – which is probably useful for its intended use underwater when diving. Compare the pictures below to see the difference in the bezel between a standard Aikon Automatic Black with its fixed bezel and an Aikon Venturer with its undirectional turning bezel.
Other details include a lumed arrow shaped index marker that points down at the 12 o’clock position, along with lume dots or bars on each hour marker – that allow the diver to orientate the watch when underwater, as well as the impressively large lume pip on the bezel.
While the watch itself boasts features aplenty that make it a suitable watch for diving, Maurice Lacroix themselves are keen to emphasise that this is a toughened up version of the standard Aikon watches, and are for those who would like to “venture” off the beaten path, with something that can take all forms of punishment that one might come across in an adventure, whether it is urban or otherwise. This is certainly evidenced by the promotional video that was released on the new watch.
Yet, whatever the intended use that owners will subject the Aikon Venturer to there is no doubt that it is a very handsome watch, particularly on the 5-link bracelet with brushed surfaces and polished edges that catch the light in a very attractive way. When it’s time to rough it out a little however, one can very easily switch to a rubber strap with the unique EasyChange System, which is done by pushing the two prongs seen in the picture below together to release it, and just pushing the replacement in, an effortless process for the owner indeed.
The Aikon Venturer is introduced in two variations with black and blue sun-ray brushed dials, and comes on either a stainless steel 5-link bracelet or dial matching rubber strap with the Maurice Lacroix “M” Logo for a total of four possible options.
The Aikon Venturer comes in at 43mm in diameter and is a welcome addition to a line up that has already been enjoying some amount of success since it was introduced. Certainly this has been due to the fact of its design, providing a strong foundation by way of the signature case and integrated bracelet. On the wrist, the ergonomics are good, with the weight of the watch head balancing wheel with either the rubber strap or the bracelet. The best of thing of all with the Aikon Venturer, and indeed for all of the standard models in the Aikon collection, is their wallet friendly price, coming in 1990 CHF for the bracelet version and 1850 CHF on rubber. In some markets however, there will be watches that will be sold as a full set, with both the bracelet and a matching rubber strap included together.
Me? I’m partial to the black dial version pictured below. It is a very handsome watch indeed that I would wear every day.