Few watches are as immediately recognisable as the iconic square Bell & Ross models. Designed for professionals who demand optimal reliability, Bell & Ross watches meet four basic principles: legibility, functionality, precision and reliability. Thus, every detail has its purpose, its function. This technical precision is expressed through pure lines and timeless elegance. Time+Tide is proud to be the Australian home of Bell & Ross online.

HANDS-ON: Bell & Ross BR V2-92 Garde-Côtes

A few months ago we had a look at the Bell & Ross BR V2-94 Garde-Côtes, an orange-accented twist on their vintage chronograph. Well, today we’re going to pare it back a little further, with the time and date BR V2-92 Garde-Côtes. Looking at Jason’s excellent photos of this watch it should be quite apparent the sort of watch you’re looking at here. A no-fuss 41mm automatic, with a bright personality. That personality comes, of course, from the bright orange chapter ring and the day-glow seconds hand. But there’s more points of interest at play than just these peacock elements. There’s the dial, a functional, almost battleship grey in a matt finish — a colour picked up in the soft rubber strap. The colour scheme is inspired by the hi-vis livery of the French Garde-Côtes, or Coast Guard, in particular their distinctive Eurocopter Search and Rescue choppers. And then there’s the bezel, an aluminium insert with radial numerals that really helps the watch live up to its ‘Vintage’ name. And it’s certainly a watch that you don’t need to stress about getting wet — 100 metres of water resistance, unidirectional bezel and screw-down crown with crown guards ensure that. For me… Read More

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IN-DEPTH: The Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Diver

The story in a second: The Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Diver transitions smoothly from the sky to the sea. In the time I spent with the Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Diver I came to think of it as an armoured car. Not the conspicuously bulked up and blinged-out vehicle beloved by the A-list, instead this diver is more akin to the subtly strengthened Land Cruiser, one that looks significantly like the regular model, but can handle IEDs and assault rifles. To me that’s what this Bell & Ross is — a super tough take on the brand’s famous instrument watch. The case It’s the case that really earned the armoured car analogy. From a quick glance, the BR 03-92 Diver shares the same 42mm steel case, but look closer and you’ll notice that quite a lot has changed to earn that 300-metre water resistance rating. The sapphire crystal is significantly super-sized, at 2.85mm thick, and the caseback, with its four screws, is a millimetre thicker than regular, non-diving models. And while these modifications would go largely unnoticed, the block crown guards and solid unidirectional bezel give the dive watch game away. The dial Bell & Ross dials have… Read More

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VIDEO: The Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Diver splashes down 

Some people say that a leopard can’t change its spots, and you know what? Some people are wrong, as the Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Diver clearly proves. The French watch brand earned their stripes with an impressive array of aviation watches, centred on the square, cockpit-inspired BR 03 case. Well, it turns out that this large, striking design works just as well at depth as it does at altitude. The BR 03-92 Diver is a remarkably smart underwater repurposing of the brand’s famous form. But really, not too much had to be changed. A bezel was added, as was a screw-down crown. The trademark Arabic numerals were replaced with simpler (and heavily lumed) hour markers. It’s clever design – something B&R excels at  – and I think this new diver will have an important role in the collection going forward. I can’t wait to see what versions will be coming down the pipeline in a few months’ time. Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Diver Australian pricing Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Diver, $5400. For more information, see here.

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HANDS-ON: Bell & Ross BR V2-92 Garde-Côtes

A few months ago we had a look at the Bell & Ross BR V2-94 Garde-Côtes, an orange-accented twist on their vintage chronograph. Well, today we’re going to pare it back a little further, with the time and date BR V2-92 Garde-Côtes. Looking at Jason’s excellent photos of this watch it should be quite apparent the sort of watch you’re looking at here. A no-fuss 41mm automatic, with a bright personality. That personality comes, of course, from the bright orange chapter ring and the day-glow seconds hand. But there’s more points of interest at play than just these peacock elements. There’s the dial, a functional, almost battleship grey in a matt finish — a colour picked up in the soft rubber strap. The colour scheme is inspired by the hi-vis livery of the French Garde-Côtes, or Coast Guard, in particular their distinctive Eurocopter Search and Rescue choppers. And then there’s the bezel, an aluminium insert with radial numerals that really helps the watch live up to its ‘Vintage’ name. And it’s certainly a watch that you don’t need to stress about getting wet — 100 metres of water resistance, unidirectional bezel and screw-down crown with crown guards ensure that. For me… Read More

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HANDS-ON: The Bell & Ross BR V2-94 Garde Cotes

For most brands a round 41mm steel chronograph would be unremarkable, but this Bell & Ross stands out precisely because of these features – it’s not an oversize square watch crafted from ceramic or some other highly technical material, which is what we’ve come to expect from Bell & Ross. Even though the BR V2-94 Garde Cotes is a far more ‘conventional’ design, don’t fall into the trap of assuming that it doesn’t stand out. There’s a lot here to please the eye – a well-balanced twin-register dial, glossy black bezel and a soft-grey and washed-out orange colour scheme to die for. While you could be forgiven for thinking that the orange hand and chapter ring on a matte-grey background are a nod to the funky sports watches of the ’70s, the truth is a little more on-brand for Bell & Ross. The aviation-focused brand has taken inspiration from the helicopters of of the French Coast Guard – or Garde Cotes – for this chronograph, which explains the choice of pulsometer scale. With it’s well-made bracelet, screw-down pushers, crown guard, 100 metres of water resistance and ever-reliable BR-CAL.302 (based on a Sellita SW300-1), the BR V2-94 Garde Cotes is an excellent… Read More

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HANDS-ON: The Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Horograph

Earlier this year Bell & Ross released a pair of their trademark square watches that demonstrated quite a different take on their perennial aviation theme. The BR 03-92 Horolum, a slab of grey metal, was inspired by an airport’s tarmac. This version, the BR 03-92 Horograph, takes a similarly pedestrian inspiration — the ubiquitous and useful airport clock. As you can imagine, legibility is the aim of the game here, with stark white printed baton indices and broad stick hands set against a matt black dial. A red-tipped second hand, date at four and a discreet minute track complete the picture. The triangular marker at 12 is a nod to the classic layout of pilot’s watches. The 42mm steel case is bead-blasted, a nice utilitarian finish that well suits the functional feel of the watch. On the wrist, the Horograph wears much like Bell & Ross’ other instrument watches, which is unsurprising given the shared case. It feels quite different from the military-inspired watches B&R are best known for. Its focus is a little less macho and a little more design, which is a nice change up. The Horograph comes on a rubber strap, which is in keeping with the brand’s… Read More

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INTRODUCING: The Bell & Ross BR V2-94 Vintage Chronograph

When I hear the words Bell & Ross, I immediately picture square watches inspired by flight instruments – watches like the iconic BR01 or its smaller cousin, the BR03. And I’m sure I’m not alone. There is, however, another side to the Bell & Ross family. With classic looks and traditional round cases, the Vintage collection draws its inspiration from the history of aviation. Designed to meet military specifications set by the armed forces, this collection has legibility, functionality and precision high on the list of “must haves”. Given these requirements, it’s not completely unexpected that this, the latest vintage-inspired chronograph, bears a resemblance to other brands’ versions of flight spec’d chronographs. Having said that, the DNA of the Vintage BR V2-94 is still very much Bell & Ross (even without the square case). The dial draws parallels to their Instruments collection, with large white numerals on a black background and distinctive sword hands, which are slightly slimmer on the Vintage Chronograph. The counterweight of the central seconds hand is stylised as a silhouette of a plane, a new feature that Bell & Ross says will be found on many future releases. Underneath the dial beats the BR-Cal.301 automatic chronograph… Read More

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