Brian M. Afuang

Maurice Lacroix Goes Diving Again

New Aikon Venturer fills in void left by the Pontos S Diver

THE new Aikon Venturer has pretty big flippers to fill.

With this piece Maurice Lacroix goes back into the water with a dive watch after its Pontos S Diver, released in 2013, slipped out of the brand’s lineup. Which is lamentable because the Pontos S was one of the quiet surprises at Baselworld that year, drawing a fair bit of attention from enthusiasts.

And it’s easy to get the attraction. Even with a modern case size, the Pontos S was decidedly vintage-themed thanks to aesthetic codes borrowed from some mid- to late-20th century dive watches. The piece had a combination of fat and thin simple indices, beefy hands and large numerals — all generously luminescent, too, instantly ticking off diver-watch boxes. It was also supplied with a NATO strap, providing further diver cred. But the watch’s biggest pluses were its internal rotating bezel (operated via a crown at 2 o’clock), a serious 600-meter depth rating, and a helium release valve. Cool stuff, this.

Maurice Lacroix of late though has been beefing up its Aikon sport watches, as the release of the line’s self-winding pieces in 2018 could attest to. Cast in the mold of 1970s luxury sport watches, the Aikon range actually makes a convincing case for being an edgier, sleeker evolution of the brand’s Calypso line, which in turn defined the 1990s idea of ornamentation.


The Venturer, then, picks up the diver watch concept for the brand, as well as boost the Aikon line. And it does this by sticking to the Aikon’s design brief even as it deviates in direction by wearing more stereotypical dive-watch elements.

Most obvious among these is the model’s gradated unidirectional rotating bezel whose numerals have found the perfect spots to sit on. These spots are none other than the six pairs of “arms” that seem to hold the Aikon watches bezels to the case — the touch is one of the collection’s signatures. Another instantly recognizable change sported by the Venturer is its dial furniture, which, like the bezel, adopts known diver elements like hour markers in circles, rectangles and a triangle, baton hour and minute hands, and a lollipop second hand.

Apparently, these dive-watch touches aren’t just for show; the Venturer has a 43-millimeter-wide steel case that, while just half as capable as the Pontos S Diver’s was, is depth-rated to a still respectable 300 meters. Helping the watch achieve this are a sapphire crystal cover on top and a screw-down caseback. The hour markers and hands are luminescent. And the bezel is made of ceramic, guaranteeing it would take some banging to scratch it. Maurice Lacroix has every right to pitch the Venturer as a tool watch.


Propping this proposition up further is the Venturer’s self-winding cal. ML 115, said to be based on a Selitta SW 200 workhorse. This 26-jewel Maurice Lacroix movement, which oscillates at 28,800vph and has a power reserve of 28 hours, is known to receive bits of rhodium plating, as well as some decorations.

And, yes, the watch does flaunt flourishes; its dial comes in either blue or black with a sunray finish, and its caseback is adorned with a “V agues du Jura” engraving. Plus, it is also supplied with a new rubber strap (color-matched to the dial choice) affixed to the lugs via the brand’s EasyChange system. This allows for an unfussy switch to an articulated, five-link, satin-finished steel bracelet.

This dive watch can clearly go fancy, too.