Ball Watch this week combines its well-known dial illumination and solid crown protector with a racing tachymeter to create the Engineer Hydrocarbon Racer Chronograph, the brand’s first automotive racing watch in years.
While Ball has long focused on designing watches with functions requested by explorers, divers, travelers and adventurers, the historical U.S. brand (now based in Switzerland) now seeks to reach automobile racing enthusiasts with this new chronograph collection. Ball Watch has offered other watches with tachymeters in years past, including the Engineer Master II Slide Chronograph and two Fireman Storm Chaser models, but this debut is the first in recent years specifically designed with such a bezel.
For Ball, adding a speed-monitoring tachymeter scale (here, in black ceramic) to the bezel of a chronograph is just a start. The remaining features Ball adds to the three-watch collection echo the brand’s attention to the needs of collectors who plan to wear their watch amid adverse conditions.
These features include a COSC-certified, chronometer-rated automatic movement (Ball’s Caliber RR1401, an upgraded and customized ETA Valjoux 7750), resistance to shocks of up to 7,500 g and anti-magnetic protection rated to 4,800 A/m.
That Ball crown protector (left), standard on the watches throughout the Ball Engineer Hydrocarbon collection, screws into the case once the owner sets the time on the watch. After the wearer clasps the patented steel protector over the crown, it won’t budge or allow dust or dirt to contamination the case interior.
And as noted, Ball’s proprietary H3 gas tube illumination (colored green on the dial and hands and yellow at 12 o’clock) means that the time – and the timing – remains visible day or night.
Ball makes the new Engineer Hydrocarbon Racer Chronograph with a 42mm diameter stainless steel case with a black ceramic bezel and a choice of a black, blue or white dial.
Ball then finishes the watch with a stainless-steel brushed and polished bracelet with a folding clasp. Price: $3,599.
SPECIFICATIONS: Ball Watch Engineer Hydrocarbon Racer Chronograph
Movement: Automatic caliber BALL RR1401-C (ETA-7750-based), chronometer-certified COSC,
7,500Gs shock resistance, 100-meters of water resistance, anti-magnetic to 4,800 A/m
Functions: Chronograph with accumulated measurement up to 45 minutes, tachymeter, hours, minutes, subsidiary seconds and date
Dial: Blue, silver or black with 15 micro gas tubes on hour and minute hands and dial for night reading capability
Case: 42mm by 15.2mm stainless steel with black ceramic bezel, anti-reflective sapphire crystal, patented crown protection system
Bracelet: Tapered stainless steel with patented folding buckle and extension system