Five hundred and fifty guests united with Bell & Ross at the historic military site of The Hotel National des Invalides in Paris last Thursday night to celebrate the watchbrand’s 10th anniversary of their iconic BR 01 and discover their latest models.Inspired by aviation and the military, the square – shaped iconic Aviation BR 01 pilot watch was launched in 2005 by Swiss Bell & Ross CEO Carlos Rosillo and Creative Director Bruno Belamich with the idea of transforming a plane’s cockpit into a wristwatch.Reputed for being reliable, functional, readable, and precise, the aviation collection developed to encompass a wide range of materials, sizes and functions.
Live Bell & Ross BR-X1 Tourbillon Gold Watch 2015
In 2014, the BR – X1 Hypersonic Chronograph introduced design and material innovations for a high-tech chronograph with a sporty design, robust construction and sophisticated haute horlogerie finishes. Today, Bell & Ross have gone one step further, with the new top-of-the-range model from the BR-X1 line: The BR-X1 Swiss Chronograph Tourbillon.
The square case of the BR-X1 is covered with a high-tech band made from ceramic and rubber. It is designed as a cover around the edges, acting as a defensive shield that protects it from possible impacts. Its innovative rocker push buttons are used to activate the chronograph functions; these push-buttons are also made from high-tech ceramic with ergonomically-designed rubber inserts. The objective, to make them as solid and easy to grip as possible. A rubber button grip insert is also built into the case at 9 o’clock, to make it easier to activate the chronograph functions, even when wearing gloves. One of the main differences —besides the obvious different case material— between the BR-X1 Carbon Forgé and its predecessor the BR-X1 Skeleton Chronograph, is that the rubber inserts on the push buttons and the case are black instead of red.
Guests rushed to the display cases to admire the novelties, which included the limited editions of the superb BR 03-94 Rafale, conceived with Dassault Aviation, in recognition of their star multi-role fighter aircraft: the Rafale. But the star of the show last Thursday night was without a doubt the BR-X1 Chronograph Tourbillon.
10 years ago Bell & Ross introduced a design that quickly became a proper icon. With the idea of recreating an aviation dashboard instrument to be worn on the wrist, the BR 01 (and its smaller sister, the BR 03) which quickly gained success and recognition, becoming nowadays one of the major manufactures. Amongst all the limited editions we’ve seen so far (and there are many of them available), the latest creation couldn’t have been more justified. Here is the Bell & Ross BR 03 Rafale Limited Edition – a BR 03-94 Ceramic Chronograph to celebrate the Dassault fighter aircraft.
Presented in four versions of 20 pieces each, with or without diamonds, this 45 mm timepiece with rocker push-button and thumb-rest insert, bumpers, crown guards, crown and caseback all in 18 ct rose gold or Grade 5 titanium houses BR-CAL.283, a hand-wound mono-pusher chronograph tourbillon movement with 4 days power reserve and function of hours and minutes.
With dials revealed through a grey-tinted sapphire crystal displaying a 30 minutes timer at 10 o’clock, 60 seconds timer at 2 o’clock and power reserve indicator at 9 o’clock, and gilt appliqué or metal indices with Superluminova ? inserts and Superluminova ? – filled hour and minute hands, the watch is completed with a rubber and alligator strap closed by a rose gold or titanium pin buckle.
Creative Director Belamich (Bell) and CEO Rosillo (Ross) have brought this Paris-headquartered company, with manufacture in La Chaux-de-Fonds, a long way in a short time, with a clear objective and unwavering source of inspiration. CEO Rosillo once showed me during an interview the extract from the film “The Right Stuff”, where Chuck Yeager breaks the sound barrier for the first time ever, back in the supersonic days. Bell & Ross have moved into Hypersonic, and beyond.