With its Classima Executives Magnum XXL Chronograph (ref. M0A08852, but you may also find it listed simply as ref. 8852), Baume & Mercier introduces its yet another timepiece that, even despite its dressy and elegant looks (at least, for a sporty chronograph that can be actually used for some light sports activity) and a great chronograph caliber that ticks inside its moderately-sized steel case, somehow lacks a face of its own.
It is no use ranting about how current mass-production watches are faceless and overpriced since we all can see the same situation repeated over and over again on just about any market, from cars to TV-sets to music to cinema to, ahem, product-oriented weblogs. Designed in order to please focus groups and boards of directors, these products often offer superior quality and sometimes even great user experience, yet, regretfully, lack in the mythical “soul” or “attitude” department. Or, putting it in a simpler way, they are boring.
This new Magnum XXL belongs to the ranks of boring things, yet, unlike a lot of competing products, the watch doesn’t pretend to be what it is definitely not. This new member of the Classima Executives family boldly says that it belongs to the mass product niche and, by the looks of it, feels fairly good about it. I mean, not everyone has to be a prima donna: somebody has to dance in corps de ballet.
Well, enough of that BS, let’s get down to business.
Its 44 mm case combines polished and satin-finished surfaces and provides more than enough living space for its ETA Valjoux 7753 automatic movement. Featuring a standard tri-compax dial layout, it sports a highly-legible, well-balanced dial, which is slightly spoiled with B&M’s trademark hour and minute hands. Giving Baume & Mercier its due, the hands feature a generous amount of SuperLuminova luminescent substance guaranteeing superb readability even at night and, perhaps, even underwater.
I mean, the Magnum XXL comes with a black rubber strap with an adjustable triple folding buckle, and a water-resistance rating of 200 meters so you can use it while scuba diving.
Build Quality: 4.5/5
Overall Legibility: 4/5
Nighttime Legibility: 5/5
Value for Money: 3/5
Overall Rating: 3.5/5
UPDATE ON PRICE: At the time of me writing this “initial impressions” review (or you may call it just an “overview” if that pleases you) there was no information available regarding the timekeeper’s minimum recommended price tag. Truth be told, I was expecting Baume & Mercier to offer the piece at €2000 or €2500 tops. Boy, I was so wrong: they offer this model at a lot more impressive price of €3500! Of course, it has already appeared at some online retailers with about 30 percent discount, but I still think that this product is overpriced even for its relatively fresh styling.
Photos: Baume & Mercier
Baume & Mercier Classima Executives Magnum XXL Chronograph specification
Price range: €3400 (MSRP)
Movement: Caliber ETA Valjoux 7753, automatic, 27 jewels, 28,800 vph, Swiss Made
Functions & Complications: Hours, minutes, small seconds, date, chronograph
Power reserve: 46 hours
Case and Bezel: Stainless steel
Size: 44.00 mm
Case height: 13.00 mm
Strap: Black vulcanized rubber
Crystal: Sapphire, AR-coated
Back: Solid steel, engraved
Water resistance: 200 meters