Brutal, yet well-proportioned, the Breitling Cockpit B50 (ref. VB501022/BD41-155S) (especially the variation in plain machine-brushed titanium) somehow reminds me of a USAF’s F22 air superiority fighter jet: everything is in its place; everything is completely functional, yet extremely sexy. The only thing that makes the new B50 model different is the price. While still deliciously expensive, it won’t make you sell your house to get one.
With its extremely clean, visually lightweight dial and a nicely proportioned (as well as elegantly decorated) stainless steel body, this beautiful Alpina Alpiner 4 Chronograph “Race for Water” Limited Edition (ref. AL-860AD5AQ6) has only one major flaw: its total production run will be restricted to just 400 pieces, which, I am afraid, will not be enough to justify demand from the general public. Well, at least there is a chance that the resale value will not plunge as swiftly as it is often the case with products delivered by second-tier brands.
Earlier this month, Jaquet Droz has presented its piece unique: the Museum Pocket Watch. It was literally built around a time-worn 18th-century movement that was lovingly (and also painstakingly) restored to its present glory in JD own workshops. Originally missing certain vital parts, the restored mechanism, as archaic as it is, looks magnificent and stately inside its massive 18-karat red gold body.
While the original Glycine F104 (ref. 3933) that was delivered back in April 2014 looked absolutely killer with its clean, vintage-inspired design, somebody at the company’s HQ has probably decided that sales are not quite satisfactory. Enters the Glycine F104 v.2, which is now available in a choice of four or five dials, and even includes a version with a steel black PVD bezel with 46 diamonds (1.80 carats, yuck!)
Unlike the much-awaited Apple iWatch (we will see it in a matter of hours), the 2014 Breitling Colt Caliber 73 SuperQuartz Chronograph doesn’t even try to destroy the competition. With its classic massive body, easy-to-grip unidirectional rotating bezel and traditional high-contrast dial, the new timepiece simply delivers in a single, relatively affordable package everything you ever wanted from a Breitling but never were quite ready to pull the trigger on their more expensive models. Powered by a COSC-certified version of a well-known quartz mechanism, the device won’t stun you with the same level of craftsmanship as an automatic mechanism decorated by a skilled hand of an artisan but instead will offer you an almost unrivaled level of precision and dependability.
With its exaggerated styling, the new Saint Honore Euphoria Quartz (Ref. 721108 6AYDR) may scare away a lot of women looking for a subtle, inconspicuous timekeeper. However, if you are not afraid of getting your fair share of the limelight, this eclectic but beautiful accessory may be a nice choice.
The Breguet Reine De Naples Princesse 8968 (Refs. 8968BR/11/986 0D0D & 8968BR/X1/986 0D0D) delivers a blend of a classic-looking ovoid body with all the usual stuff that we expect from the collection. The list includes a notched side strip and crown, which is ergonomically placed at 4 o’clock, and a decisively modern off-centered dial with stylized numerals and a slight variation of the traditional “Breguet” hands that so many -ahem- other watchmakers love so much.
The Eberhard & Co. Traversetolo Ambri Piotta (Ref. 21016) is a classic hand-wound three-hander that features a surprisingly easy-to-read dial and is powered by the legendary Unitas 6498 caliber.
Unveiled at SIHH 2014, the IWC Aquatimer Deep Three Titanium (Ref. IW355701) is perhaps the first “tool” diver that actually looks great. Its lightweight titanium case is meticulously crafted and features a much elaborated high-tech finish. With its easy-grip rotating bezel and crisp (although a bit busy thanks to its mechanical depth gauge display) dial, the wristwatch would look organic in a sci-fi movie like Oblivion or maybe even Prometheus.
Available in two versions, each of them limited to 2888 pieces, the new collection of Frederique Constant Runabout automatic chronographs (Refs. FC-393RM5B4 and FC-393RM5B6) is an example of good industrial design with its large, clean dial both easily readable and pleasant to look at. Although its functionality (more on that later, you are going to raise at least one eyebrow) is somewhat limited compared to the previous Runabout Chrono, this model still makes a strong impression.