If SIHH is like the hors d’oeuvres, Baselworld, running from 19 to 26 March, is a bonanza gala dinner. The Geneva show presents the 16 brands in the Richemont group; Baselworld presents just about all the rest there is in watchmaking and jewellery, with the massive number of 1,500 brands. There is space for everyone, from the huge stands built by the major brands, to the small areas hosting independent watchmakers whose products often reveal some fine surprises. It’s very much a “trade” fair, with large brands selling and collecting orders from distributors; large-volume watch brands use the feedback from Baselworld to calibrate proportions of watch variants to ensure that over the year they will be making the right number of each watch model to meet demand.
Just as for SIHH, some brands present previews of the new watches that they will be presenting at Baselworld. Bell & Ross is a French company headed by French/Swiss designer Bruno Belamich and businessman Carlos A. Rosillo, and their principal theme is that of aviation watches, often square and based on cockpit instruments. The BR03-92 Military Type is a classic Bell & Ross timepiece, based on the BR03-92 which is itself a smaller (42mm) version of the classic 46 mm BR-01.
In terms of appearance, the BR03-92 Military Type is very similar to the BR03 Ceramic, with the only visible difference being the addition of the red MT logo opposite the small date window. Hands and dial indications are liberally coated with SuperLuminova for night-time readability; the ceramic case is tough and unscratchable, and the watch is offered with either a black rubber strap or a heavy-duty canvas strap, the latter coordinating with the khaki dial. The watch is powered by an automatic Swiss-made movement, presumably the trusted ETA 2892-A2 or its clone the Sellita SW300, and in any case renamed the BR-CAL.302. Perfect for anyone who likes the pilot’s watch appearance.
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