The French-origin brand Bell & Ross, renowned for its large, square-cased models inspired by the gauges in the aircraft cockpits, is the guest on our pages with the BRV2-93 GMT model added to the Vintage Collection this year.
With its product groups such as BR01 and BR03, Bell & Ross has established itself as one of the most unique names of the luxury watchmaking. Even though they have become a symbol of the brand, the large, square-cased models are obviously not very in addressing a wide range of users in practice. On the other hand, the Vintage Collection stands out with its purely vintage-inspired designs and simple but functional features. A member of the brand’s 2018 novelties, the model we opted for our review, Bell & Ross Vintage BRV2-93 GMT, attracts attention with its user friendly second (actually triple) time zone feature, one of the indispensable complications of pilot watches.
The vintage collection, as the name implies, marks the rich history of the brand and hosts products that are inspired by successful past models. The product group, which has brought a successful return to the brand from the commercial point of view as well, has continued to strengthen its position in the market with continuous refinements as well as new models. Bell & Ross Vintage BRV2-93 GMT model that we have here is a nice example to sum up the collection’s philosophy.
The Bell & Ross Vintage BRV2-93 GMT has quite similar features with the previously introduced BR 123 GMT 24H model. However, the aforementioned refinement section shows itself in details that will not be missed by careful eyes. First of all, the diameter of the retro designed stainless steel case is reduced from 42mm to 41mm. Although 1mm doesn't look like a huge difference, it plays an important role in having the best proportions, especially when it comes to Vintage-Inspired designs.
On the front side of the case is a scratch-resistant sapphire crystal glass with an anti-reflection coating designed in domed form to match the retro character of the model. Water resistant to 100 meters, the case is also equipped with a sapphire crystal display case back. Another differentiating detail with the predecessor, BR 123 GMT 24H, is the black anodized aluminum insert bezel instead the satin finish stainless steel one.
It is possible to mention various nuances in the dial design of the model as well. Using the same lay-out with the BR 123 GMT 24H, the GMT lettering is finished in matching orange tone with the second time zone indicating hand. However, than hand set is re-designed to sword shaped hands, which offer clearer legibility compared to BR 123 GMT 24H model’s baton hands. The font for the Arabic numeral indices stays the same but the color is changed from silver (metal) to white, which again offers improved legibility. Thanks to its Super LumiNOVA phosphor material application, the dial provides optimal readability in darker environments as well. With its clean and functional design, the dial successfully expresses the model’s retro appeal and tool-watch character.
The model is powered by the brand’s Caliber Ref. BR-CAL.303, which is based on the well-known ETA 2893-2. 21 jewels self-winding movement beats at a frequency of 4Hz (28.800vph) and offers a power reserve of 42 hours when fully wound. Visible through the sapphire crystal display case back, the movement is equipped with hours, minutes, seconds, date, second time zone with quick correction and independent hour hand functions.
The version we chose for the review includes a stainless steel bracelet combining matt and glossy finished links. In addition to the metal bracelet which provides a comfortable use with its push-button release folding clasp, the collection also includes a black rubber strap alternative that is secured by a stainless steel pin buckle.
The list prices for both versions are as follows;
Reference: BRV293-BL-ST / SRB - with rubber strap - EUR 2,900
Reference: BRV293-BL-ST / SST - with metal bracelet - EUR 3,200