As many of you know, the story of Bell & Ross is mostly related to military watches created for pilots and special forces. The most emblematic models of the brand, the Class 01 e Class 03, have become modern classics thanks to their bold and distinctive design, described as a "circle within a square". However, the brand had to evolve and offer less segmented models by adding a few pieces with a more urban feel. Hence the creation in 2019 of the Class 05, the famous sports watch with integrated bracelet of the brand with always clear design codes of Bell & Ross. Just today, a beefier, more masculine automatic chronograph is introduced, the Bell & Ross BR 05 chrono.
Founded in 1992 by childhood friends and college students Bruno Belamic e Carlos Rosillo ( "Bell"By Belamich and"Ross"By Rosillo), Bell & Ross has, since its early days, focused its design on military inspirations and aviator watches. At first, the brand collaborated with the German watchmaker Sinn for a decade of production, which speaks volumes about the robustness and utilitarian aspect of these watches. Probably the most important date in the history of the brand was 2005, when a clear identity with the now iconic was established. Class 01. Inspired by the instruments of military aircraft, the watch was born with a square case and four visible screws in the corners. Oversized, instrumental and instantly recognizable.
The design was really simple but efficient: a square case, a circular dial and visible screws in each corner of the case. Qhis became the brand's signature and was later used in watches Class 03 more compact. A design so strong that whenever the brand needed to expand and develop a new collection, it couldn't be overlooked.
But then, why B&R has gone beyond this successful range of military, pilot, aviation watches to create the new BR05? Well, as respected as the house's timepieces have been, we are, alas, still talking about a niche product with a bold design that is quite difficult to use on a daily basis. The brand had almost reached a point of stagnation. And this necessary evolution called for a contemporary product with an urban edge to meet today's demand, a luxury sports watch with an integrated bracelet.
The answer of Bell & Ross to this question was the collection Class 05. You can't blame a brand for producing watches that answer market demand, but you can blame a brand for a lack of authenticity. On this point, Bell & Ross she managed to merge the codes of the luxury sports watch and her own DNA in a rather fresh and faithful way. Based on the concept of a watch with a shaped steel case and integrated bracelet, the brand adds a typical square bezel with 4 polished screws and a classic round dial, with indices and numerals characteristic of the brand. The case is well executed, with the classic brushed surfaces lightened by polished bevels with a well proportioned diameter of 40mm. To contain the price, the internal movement is a Sellita upgraded and specially decorated.
Until now, the watch has been released in multiple iterations in date and time versions, with closed dial in steel and grey, black and blue dials, worn on a steel bracelet or rubber strap. So here is the first natural evolution of Bell & Ross BR 05, which is updated with a chronograph movement, a classic style for sports watches with an integrated bracelet. The addition of a chronograph function often means an extra dose of sportiness for watches, and this one BR 05 Chrono is no exception. Not only is the look of the watch busier, bolder and more masculine, but the proportions have changed, but not the overall concept.
The case of this version Chrono, still in stainless steel, has grown to leave some room for the movement and its more complex dial. Il Class 05 it's a sturdier piece, measuring 42mm from 3 to 9 o'clock and approximately 13.5mm thick (about 3mm thicker than the 3-hand model). The other evolutions obviously involve the addition of buttons on the side of the case, which are rectangular and angled to follow the lines of the case. The crown protection module has also been redesigned.
The overall design of the watch remains similar to the previous date and time version. The rounded square shape is still there, as are the aligned polished screws and round opening on the dial. The finish of the case remains very satisfying, with nice, clean brushed surfaces and bright polished accents that lend a touch of luxury. The watch looks solid and refined at the same time. On the wrist there is no denying a certain ea presenceEven the weight, especially if worn on the steel bracelet, is not negligible. However, the case is short and the bracelet is tightly integrated which means that the BR 05 Chrono feels balanced and well placed on most wrists. A good point to mention is also the bracelet which tapers towards the clasp thus adding more comfort. Finally, even with this chronograph function, the watch remains water resistant to 100 metres.
The dial is the most obvious novelty of this watch. While the time-and-date model was all minimalist, this one BR 05 Chrono it's busier and more playful. The hands and hour markers have been retained, as has the sun-brushed finish of the dial, which is available in black or blue. Items are generously filled with Super-LumiNova which provides excellent night readability, a specialty for Bell & Ross.
On the question of the chronograph counters, Bell & Ross he had to think about integrating them in a way that respected the general shape of the watch. As such, the secondary meters follow the same general design as the case, so they too are square with rounded corners. The small seconds counters and the 30-minute register are spiral-shaped and feature a trace of contrasting gray. Their hands also have a square central canon. Finally, the date is set at 4:30.
To power this BR 05 Chrono, Bell & Ross relies on the proven BR-CAL.301, based on the automatic modular chronograph ETA 2894-2. As with the 3-hand models, it features an openwork rotor. Il Bell & Ross BR 05 chrono is launched in four editions, with a black or blue dial, each available on an integrated steel bracelet with triple folding clasp or a textured rubber strap, matching the color of the dial, with a folding clasp.
The collection Bell & Ross BR 05 Chrono, black on steel, black on rubber, blue on steel, blue on rubber, is available today October 22, 2020 at retailers and in the brand's online boutique which you can find at this link. Prices will be 5.400 EURO su rubber strap e 5.900 EURO on steel bracelet.