Up close with Bremont’s Baselworld launches | Salon QP
March 26, 2015
This year at Baselworld, Bremont was all about core collection watches: no limited editions
though the Jaguar MKI, by dint of its BWC/01-10 movement, will no doubt be limited
There was one very significant announcement away from the core watches, however:
of a new technical director, Stephen McDonnell. While McDonnell will be unknown to most,
his CV reads like a roll-call of cutting-edge Swiss brands, including MB&F,
Maitres du Temps and Speake-Marin, where he specialised in the design and
prototyping of new
movements. An Oxford grad and alumnus of WOSTEP, McDonnell is
returning from Switzerland to work full time for Bremont.
On with the watches, starting with two new additions to the Boeing line, both in titanium and both
with GMT functions: the Model 1 Ti-GMT and the Model 247 Ti-GMTchronograph
There is, of course, thematic sense in adding GMT functions to a watch line associated
with the world’s most famous aircraft manufacturer. Accordingly, a 24 hour ring has
been inserted around the edge of the dial on both watches, along with a prominent yellow
GMT hand. While the non-GMT Boeing chronographs have two subdials in “bi-compax”
formation, the GMT version introduces a third chronograph hours dial, in a 6-9-12
arrangement, as on Bremont’s Alt1-B and Alt1-Z (see below). For the lightweight cases,
Bremont has used Boeing aviation-grade Ti-6-4 titanium, an extra-strong form of the metal.
Besides anthracite grey dials to go with the dull tones of the lightweight titanium case,
the GMT models have also been upgraded with grey ceramic bezels – the first time
Bremont has used the material – with minute markers.
The Bremont Boeing Model 1 Ti-GMT is £4,295. The Boeing Model 247 Ti-GMT is £4,995.
Next up, Bremont has introduced a new model in its U-2 range, based on one of the company’s
recent military projects. This is the U-22.
This sees the U-2, with a case notable for its dual crowns (the lower of which is for operating
the rotating inner bezel) gain a grey dial and a wider, 3-digit date opening, as found on recent
IWC pilot’s watches among others. Apparently this has been requested by pilots, since it
recalls cockpit dashboard instrumentation. The rotating inner bezel has been changed from a
60 second counter to a compass quadrant, useful (according to Bremont) for navigation
weather mapping. Meanwhile, the bronze barrel colour that appeared rather magnificently
in last year’s MBIII makes an appearance again.
The Bremont U-22 is £3,695.
We wrote previously about Bremont’s new family of Jaguar watches, the Jaguar MKI
and MKII. Having unveiled six watches last year, co-designed with Jaguar for the
launch of the car legend’s new lightweight E-Types, Bremont has now extended the
design into its core range in steel, including both time-only and chronograph models.
We can report that, in the metal, these watches are really rather stunning. The domed
sapphire crystal and curvaceous case, in particular, mark something of an elegant
departure for Bremont, and we’re all for it.
The MKII chronograph carries Bremont’s customarily upgraded version of the Valjoux
7750 movement, while the MKII contains the BWC-01 proprietary movement developed
in collaboration with La Joux-Perret. On both watches, the rotors have been made to
resemble Jaguar E-Type steering wheels (though without quite the level of adornments,
The Bremont Jaguar MKI is £8,450. The Bremont Jaguar MKII is £4,950.
Lastly, Bremont has updated one of its most successful and longest-running watches, the Alt1-Z Zulu.
What was previously a distinctly busy, even rather hectic, dial, has been simplified, streamlined
Numerals have been replaced by arrowed hour markers, the 24-hour GMT scale has been moved
from the dial to the rotating inner bezel, and the subdials have been given a calmer, uniform look
in keeping with the rest of the dial. It’s a surer, more sophisticated look compared to the Alt1-Z
that formed part of Bremont’s original collection in 2007, and together with the above watches,
shows a British brand that is, we think, maturing rather nicely. The Bremont Alt1-ZT is £4,795.