Baselworld. The biggest watch fair in the world occupies over 141,000 square metres of floor space, showcases 1500 exhibitors and is reported on by 4,000+ journalists. The epic event draws in the realm of 150,000 entrance fee paying attendees each year. It’s a fact. The halls of Baselworld are a holy ground for watch lovers, a place where venerated greats such as Patek Philippe and Breguet, industry giants like Rolex, Omega and TAG Heuer and of course all the cool-kid indies come to unveil their latest and greatest creations. If you can’t make it to this mecca for mechanical watches, don’t worry, because we’ve got this. Andrew, Felix, Marcus, Mick, DC and our stringer Justin are all on the ground and there’ll be no sleep till Brooklyn for team Time+Tide. Brooklyn being the 24th of March, when it’s over. We’ve prepared our live, comprehensive analysis of the biggest and best releases of the Baselworld 2016, all in one place. Welcome to the latest edition of the Basel Bible.
The Hublot Big Bang MECA-10
Hublot’s latest Big Bang isn’t a chronograph – but that doesn’t stop it from being a cracker of a watch. Check out our full write-up. RRP $25,700.
The Rolex Cosmograph Daytona with Cerachrom Bezel in 904L steel (ref 116500 LN)
Rolex has finally updated the steel Daytona, which now means that the entire Daytona collection is up-to-date with the latest technical advances. Rolex has released white and black dial versions, with the monobloc Cerachrom bezel being the only major change – case size and movement remain the same. Though the white dial’s black subdial rings (replacing the previous version’s silver) do more strongly evoke vintage Daytonas. For a closer look, watch our video review. RRP $15,700 AUD
The Rolex Oyster Perpetual Air-King (ref 116900)
The Air-King has been an entry-level staple in the Rolex family since the 1940s, and it was a sad day for many when the model was discontinued in 2014, Thankfully, it was a remarkably short hiatus, as the brand has just unveiled the new and improved Air-King. Now with a 40mm case and a bold new dial with prominent minutes scale and a printed yellow and green Rolex logo. Can’t deny it gets the ‘green and gold’ Aussie DNA stirring…
The Rolex Oyster Perpetual Yacht-Master 40 in Rolesor
Hot on the heels of the Everose Yacht-Master 116655, Rolex has released an updated steel and Everose Yacht-Master this year, which meets their new and improved Superlative Chronometer certification.
The Rolex Day-Date 40 with green dial
The Rolex Day-Date celebrates its 60th anniversary this year, and to honour “The Presidents Watch” they’ve released a version of the latest Day-Date with a green dial. We can’t wait to get a closer look at this one.
The Rolex Oyster Perpetual Datejust 41
Rolex has also announced an update to their everyday classic – the Datejust. The new Datejust 41 is available in numerous Rolesor variants (steel and yellow or Everose gold) and has an updated 41mm case as well as the new calibre 3235.
The Rolex Cellini Date in blue and Dual Time in brown
Rolex has updated much of the Cellini collection, with new lacquer dials and hour markers. Our eyes were instantly drawn to the rich new blue dial option on the Cellini Date and the even richer (if possible) brown Dual Time version.
The Rolex Cosmograph Daytona in white gold with blue dial (ref 116509)
While the new steel Cerachrom models have all the attention, Rolex also released a great new blue dialed version with popping red highlights.
The Rolex Cosmograph Daytona in yellow gold with green dial (ref 116508)
They also released a yellow gold variant with a classic Rolex green dial. Of course both watches meet the brand’s new Superlative Chronometer standard.
The Tudor Heritage Black Bay Bronze
Tudor’s sun-kissed beauty represents more than just a fresh coat of bronzer. With a beefed up 43mm case, an in-house movement and a brand new dial layout it’s the most innovation we’ve seen in Tudor’s flagship line since its initial release in 2012. For the full story check out our hands-on review. RRP 3800 CHF
The Patek Philippe Aquanaut Travel Time (ref 5164)
In 2012 Patek released the unexpectedly awesome Aquanaut Travel Time in steel. Well this year, they’ve followed up with the a rose gold version. Practically edible, and you know it would be high in calories.
The Patek Philippe Chronograph (ref 5170)
Taking its good looks (and Breguet numerals) from last years stunner, the reference 5370P, Patek’s new reference 5170 chronograph is available in rose gold with either black or silver dials.
The Patek Philippe World Time Chronograph (ref 5930)
The big Patek hit of Baselwrold 2106. The 5930 is the world’s thinnest chronograph worldtimer and clocks in at a mere 12mm high. It manages to do all this while looking stunning.
The Longines RailRoad
A distinctive design from the 1960s, legibility and precision are the names of the game here – though Longines has still managed to inject their characteristic dose of old world charm into the RailRoad. Well priced at $2350 AUD.
La Grande Classique de Longines
The Omega Speedmaster Moonphase Chronograph Master Chronometer
It’s hot not just because of the blue livery, or the new Liquidmetal bezel insert, but also thanks to the new movement powering it. The Caliber 9904 is Master Chronometer certified, and adds a moonphase to the mix.
The Bell & Ross BR-X1 Skeleton Chronograph Hyperstellar
The Hyperstellar would be a solid choice for a manned mission to Mars, thanks to its ultra-light construction from grade 5 titanium, with blue anodised aluminium highlights. And of course, operating the chronograph on EVAs would be a breeze, thanks to the BR-X1s rubber-clad ‘rocker’ style chronograph pushers.
The Bulgari Octo Finissimo Minute Repeater
It is not always the Italian way to do things quietly, humbly and without overt fanfare. But that’s exactly how Bulgari, a watchmaking maison that is stealthily building the brand cachet they have always desired, released the world’s thinnest minute repeater.
Monsieur de Chanel
A mix of the classical and the quirky, this completely in-house creation is the first Chanel timepiece exclusively for men.
The Glashuütte Original Senator Excellence
Featuring an extra 20cm of Nivarox mainspring fitted into the expanded spring barrel, which has extended the power reserve from 42 to 100 hours (regulated by four screws on the hairspring), which is impressive. As well as the ingenious bayonet mount that makes the movement really stable.
The Seiko Presage Chronograph 60th Anniversary Limited Edition
While much attention has been paid to the latest Grand Seiko offerings, as well as their ultra-cool Prospex Marinemaster GPS-Solar Dual Time, we can safely argue that the limited edition Presage chronographs are their finest under-the-radar offerings of 2016. Seiko is launching the Presage collection internationally this year, and these two watches celebrate the 60th anniversary of Seiko’s first automatic watch.