Le Jour, a French distributor, is best known as a European retailer of chronographs manufactured by Heuer in the 1980s. Le Jour means “the day” was the export name of Yema that used to bring watches into the States.
Back then, though Heuer produced an array of watches under their private label arrangements, Yema/ LeJour has the watchmaking know-how to provide some exciting tool watches themselves. In the mid ’60, Le Jour made a professional diver called Superman. The 39mm, 300m water resistant dive watch was adopted even by the French army back then, while also being commercialized for general consumers as a daily watch.
|Le Jour Coral Diver Brown Ref. LJ-CD-005
Like many companies, Le Jour eventually perished during the height of the quartz crisis. The rights to the brand changed ownership numerous times, with no significant attempt to revive the brand. That is, until now...
After the great success of re-launching their Chronograph - the Mk 1, along with their 60s Vintage Diver collections, many collectors are eager to know what’s next for them. And so they replied with another bang from their archives — something from the 70s - the Le jour Coral Diver. Its high-profile look, premium quality components with impeccable execution ticks all the boxes for those who are interested in this genre.
A decade apart from their very first 1963 Superman release ref. 87062, Le Jour took a step further, reliving creatively by incorporating the dynamic 70s luxury sports watch silhouette, with their dive watch know-how. The Le Jour Coral Diver Brown Ref. LJ-CD-005 chiefly inspired by none other than the epoch defined by expensively-crafted steel sports watches, where their watch head gets an integrated stainless steel bracelets flowing seamlessly to elevate certain casualness in a sporty manner, for their wearers.
While the precursors were fabricated by high-end brands, generally come in both mechanical and quartz movements, powering the Coral Diver is the venerable SELLITA SW200 Swiss Automatic Movement operating at 28,800 BPH (4 Hertz) with hacking and hand winding capabilities. It has 25 jewels with a power reserve of approximately 40 hours.
The emblematic tonneau-shaped case measures 42mm wide, 48mm lug-to-lug, and 14mm thick, with water-resistant of good 200m. It’s almost accurate to its original chronographs that vintage enthusiast appreciates, with eminent execution of today’s watchmaking. Thanks to its integrated bracelet, the Coral Diver is still ultra-wearable (39-42mm being a sweet spot) for any wrist size, lending a peculiar shape-styling apart from the usual round cases.
In terms of case finishing, the case of the Coral Diver seems almost like its straight out of the 1970s era, but with higher construction level with greater appeal. Hey, its a luxury sports watch after all.
Integrated bracelet for a sleek lock
Starting from the top, the 120- click uni-directional black bezel has an upgraded ceramic insert from the aluminum ones placed on the previous Vintage Divers. Le Jour took a supplemental step to have the diving markers all engraved (even the numerals) and applied with the Swiss Super-Luminova that glows green in the dark. All that creates a sense of depth and increases readability.
The mid-case vociferate 70s quirks, beginning with a radial satin-brushed finish on its top surface, only to be broken up by an additional detail of thick yet sleek polished bevel linings that run across those lugs neatly, exemplifying how an old-school cushion style watch finished in the 1970s. The lugs get a sweet L-shaped pucker, which heightens the case shape while restraining the case from being chunky.
The robust lofty screw-down crown feels durable when it used to set the date and time, with an additional textured Le Jour emblem placed on the side.
Ceramic bezel for durability
The Coral Diver is a compelling dive watch of retro flair along with meticulous detailings. The amount of detail Le Jour put in to bring back their maritime heritage, is well portrayed on the markers and handset used on its brown Textured dial. Inspired by the oceans, the dial has been designed with an intriguing grainy whirlpool texture adding charisma to the refined timepiece.
The prominent and distinctive applied markers have metal trims around them, supplied with the right amount of SuperLuminova. Both the handset and markers are indeed done in tradition, where even Swiss dive watch brands themselves depict these traits on their dive watches, but we digress. Well balanced symmetry is maintained on the dial with those immaculately applied indices and classically styled hands.
The handset on the Hammerhead Diver has bold broad-hands that echos its tonneau case design. All the hands being generously applied with green C3 Super-Luminova for excellent readability in low light situations.
Swiss Super-Luminova that glows green in the dark
The details do not stop here, The date-window at 3 o’clock has a matching color metal frame with those trims on the hour markers, and it creates a balanced look throughout.
Keeping all these well preserved is the added domed-sapphire crystal with anti-reflective coatings underneath.
Turning it over, we have a screw-down casebook with different finishings- the middle had a grainy texture and raised coral reefs emblem along with the “Le Jour” logo and “Coral Diver” text right below it. Moving outwards, we have essential information on the dive watch with its serial number, which is a nice touch for any diving enthusiast. Consequently, it is all about the details right here.
Screw-down case-back with motif
For a nice luxurious touch, the watch comes fitted with an integrated sports steel metal bracelet that gradually tapers from lug to clasp, while featuring the satin-brushed finishing on top with polished sides, giving it a complete look with the watch case, a versatile look and wear.
Summing things up, the Coral Diver Brown Ref. LJ-CD-005 is a watch that shows just how a true 70s cushion case diver should be done and has an excellent chance of becoming as much of a cult watch as those come before it. Impeccable quality elevates the owner’s experience; Coral Diver is designed with meticulous details and balanced weight for optimum comfort. Contemporary design and elegant aesthetics with practical functionality of a modern-day dive watch, the Coral Diver is a sophisticated timepiece to be worn on all year round. Its a hell of a worthy piece for any watch enthusiasts.