Yesterday, the Swiss manufacturer has introduced its new Breitling for Bentley 6.75 Midnight Carbon limited edition wrist watch. Created in partnership with the German-owned, British-based maker of ultra-luxury cars, the monstrous timepiece features all the usual design elements of the family and, as usual, comes in a fairly small lot of 1000 individually numbered pieces. Like a number of their recent offerings, it is offered in a sexy black (or very dark grey) finish that, unlike models treated with PVD coating process, will not show minor dents and scratches.
The black (although they prefer to rather pompously call it Royal Ebony) face of the watch features a somewhat unusual vertical open-working pattern that makes tiny (but only tiny) bits of the mainplate visible through the dial. I am not sure about their real source of inspiration, but the design somehow reminds me vertical radiator grilles of all iconic Bentley limousines and sports cars that were changed for the current mesh grille only about 15 years ago when the brand was acquired by Volkswagen.
In a nod (or maybe even a low bow) to the brand’s present, the knurled bezel of the timekeeper features a pattern that mimics the aforementioned mesh grille.
Frankly, I am not particularly happy about the dials look because I find it visually aggressive and even a bit tiresome. Still, I am sure that there will be thousands of potential customers that will love it.
Of course, the engine that powers the timepiece is light years behind the 6.75-liter technical marvel that Bentley uses for its top-of-the-line models, but is still quite nice. Being based on the good old ETA 2892 movement, the Caliber 44B was built according to highest standards and, as usual, was certified by COSC as a chronometer. The certificate basically guarantees you that you get one of the most accurate and reliable mass-produced movement that money can buy. Well, perhaps, it is not as good as Rolex chronograph calibers, but it is still quite good.
As usual, you will not be able to get a glimpse at the mechanism, since it is hidden from envious eyes with a nicely decorated solid case back cover.
Like their earlier Breitling for Bentley Light Body Midnight Carbon Chronograph that the brand started selling around a year ago, the watch, too, comes in an easily recognizable body design that, while measuring the same impressive 49 millimeters in diameter, must be significantly heavier since the lightweight titanium in this particular, um, case was replaced for a lot more massive carbonized “black steel”. I am not sure about the exact process that the Swiss manufacturer uses to treat their cases, but usually the stainless steel bodies undergo hot plasma treating that allows to significantly increase concentration of carbon in the upper layer of the metal. As a result, they become a lot more resistant to mechanical damage and, as a byproduct, also look quite cool.
While most owners of luxury watches tend to worry about them being accidentally scratches, proud owners of this monster will have to be careful not to scratch their Bentleys, as well as their working desks crafted from some extremely exotic precious wood.
WWR preliminary verdict
Build quality: 5/5
Value for money: 3.5/5
Breitling for Bentley 6.75 Midnight Carbon Limited Edition specification
Price: $10,990 (MSRP, ref. M4436413/BD27-220S)
Movement: Automatic, Caliber 44B (base ETA 2892), COSC-certified chronometer, Swiss Made
Number of jewels: 38
Movement frequency: 28,800 vph
Power reserve: 42 hours
Movement decoration: No data
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, big date, chronograph, slide rule
Case material: Stainless steel, carbon black
Bezel material: Matches case
Crown material: Matches case
Case shape: Octagonal
Bezel shape: Round
Case size: 49.00 mm
Case height: No data
Lug width: No data
Dial: Royal Ebony (black)
Hour markers: Black, luminous dots
Hands: Black, luminous
Water resistance: 100 meters
Strap: Black rubber strap with “Bentley” inscription
Crystal: Sapphire, antireflective
Case back: Solid, decorated