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Ulysse Nardin extends its X-themed skeleton dive watch collection with the new Diver X Skeleton White, a 44mm titanium-cased model with an openwork dial and concave, rubberized white bezel.

The new Ulysse Nardin Diver X Skeleton White.

As the latest X-series model thus far in the watchmaker’s dive watch collection, the watch underscores its white theme with white markers, a white crown protector and a white rubber strap. Under and around the large polished and satin-finished X-shaped dial bridge Ulysse Nardin sensibly offers clear view of the UN-372 automatic caliber.

As with the existing Diver X models, the movement is also quite visible from its clear sapphire back, which exposes the movement’s silicon escapement wheel, pallet and balance-spring. Also on display is the logo-marked rotor, gearing and barrel cover.

Ulysse Nardin insures that the polished and satin-finished titanium case is water-resistant to 200 meters. The watchmaker attaches the case to your wrist with a white rubber strap complete with ‘Ulysse Nardin’ element and titanium folding clasp, or with a white woven strap.

Ulysse Nardin’s Caliber UN-372.

Price: $26,400.

 

Specifications: Ulysse Nardin Diver X Skeleton White 

 

Movement: Manufacture caliber UN-372 skeleton automatic. Oversized oscillator in silicon, escapement wheel, anchor & balance spring in silicon. Frequency 3 Hz (21,600 vph).

Case: 44mm titanium polished & satin-finished, concave rubberized unidirectional rotating bezel, titanium open sapphire case back, Water resistance to 200 meters.

Dial: Skeleton X shape polished and satin-finished grey, grey indexes and hands with Superluminova.

Strap: White rubber with UN titanium element with titanium deployant buckle and

white fabric strap with scratch closing. Compatible with R-STRAP.

Price: $26,400

Independent Swiss watchmaker Vulcain, best known for its Cricket mechanical alarm watches, revives its Nautique dive watch collection from 1960 with the new Skindiver Blue and Skindiver Black, a 38mm steel model offered in a blue or black dial option.

The new Vulcain Skindiver Black.

Both retro-styled dive models feature a modern ceramic fluted bezel insert, khaki brown Super-Luminova-enhanced hands and indexes, domed sapphire crystal and easy-to-read white markers.

The new Vulcain Skindiver Blue.

The retro update also includes a modern ETA 2824 automatic movement protected within a case made water resistant to 200 meters.

Based in Le Locle, Vulcain has made a name for itself for decades with its Cricket mechanical alarm watch. But under the relatively new product guidance of Guillaume Laidet, who oversaw the revival of Nivada Grenchen and Excelsior Park after starting and then selling his own brand William L. 1985, Vulcain has extensive plans to re-introduce itself to modern collectors and enthusiasts. Vulcain’s most recent Cricket reboot was met with a strong positive consumer reaction.

Vulcain offers the new watch on a leather strap with a black carbon pattern and matching stitching. The strap case be easily swapped with Vulcain’s own ‘quick-change’ system.

Price: $1,616.

Specifications: Vulcain Skindiver

References: Black version – VUL-DI-001 / Blue version – VUL-DI-002 

Movement: Automatic ETA 2824 with 38-hour power reserve.

Case: 38mm by 12.2mm 316L vertical-brushed stainless steel, domed sapphire crystal, unidirectional rotating bezel with black ceramic insert, polished stainless steel caseback. Water resistance to 200 meters.

Dial options: Matte black with white transfer print and khaki brown Super-Luminova-enhanced hands and indexes (VUL-DI-001) Vertical-brushed blue with white transfer print and khaki brown Super-Luminova-enhanced hands and indexes (VUL-DI-002) 

Strap: Black leather with carbon pattern and matching stitching, stainless steel buckle. 

Price: $1,616.

Bell & Ross’s Carlos Rosillo and Bruno Belamich have teamed with watch design legend Alain Silberstein to create a trio of watches that combine Silberstein’s colorful shapes with a black ceramic version of Belamich’s aviation-inspired square Bell & Ross BR 03 design.

United as the fourth offering from Singapore-based Grail Watch, the two watchmakers have devised the Bell & Ross × Alain Silberstein Black Ceramic Trilogy, which consists of a BR 03 time-only model with date, a BR 03 diving watch and a BR 03 chronograph.

All three watches use the now more common, smaller version of the BR 03 case. While the original BR 01 measured 46mm × 46mm, most recent BR 03 collections measure 42mm × 42mm, the size of each model in the new Grail Watch collection.

Notably, none of the watches features a brand logo.

“We decided to simply use the ampersand that already features prominently in our brand name, because what better symbol for a collaboration between equals could you imagine?” says Belamich.

“With the chronograph, Carlos explained that the seconds hand was by far the largest one ever fitted to one of their watches, and we had to ensure the reset function worked perfectly each and every time so it would align exactly at zero,” Silberstein adds.

“With the diving watch, we had to make sure these huge oversized hands were as light as possible, so they wouldn’t affect the overall precision of the movement. And then to make a two-color ceramic bezel was a major challenge.”

The Bell & Ross x Alain Silberstein BR 03-92 Marine 22, showing large hands.

Time & Date

The first watch in the trio, the Bell & Ross x Alain Silberstein BR 03-92 Klub 22, is a time-only model on a matte black ceramic case and jet-black dial.

The Bell & Ross x Alain Silberstein BR 03-92 Klub 22.

Silberstein’s massive hand design creates a playful dial while as a large blue arrow indicates minutes and an S-shaped yellow form indicates the seconds.

The dial is interrupted only by the subtle date indicator. The watch features an automatic movement caliber BR.CAL-302 with date function. Priced at $4,400, it will be made in 200 examples. 

The Dive Watch

The Bell & Ross x Alain Silberstein BR 03-92 Marine 22, the second model in the trio, is a re-imagined dive model.

The Bell & Ross x Alain Silberstein BR 03-92 Marine 22.

Here Silberstein applies his “Maxi’ hands, which include a blue circular hours hand and a large red arrow. While both hands are liberally coated with luminescent material, the minute hand is particularly visible due to its critical elapsed dive time function.

To that end, the designer created a specialized two-tone ceramic bezel with the final twenty minutes of the insert colored red and a full set of 20-minute markers with luminous indexes.

The Bell & Ross x Alain Silberstein BR 03-92 Marine 22 diver model is depth rated to 300 meters, features a screw-down crown and is powered by caliber BR.CAL-302, the same automatic movement with date function used in the time only model. It will be made in a series of 100 examples. Price: $5,600.

The Chronograph

The third model in the series is the Bell & Ross x Alain Silberstein BR 03 Krono 22, a chronograph with five of Silberstein’s famous Bauhaus-inspired hands.

The Bell & Ross x Alain Silberstein BR 03 Krono 22.

The hours are indicated by red circle with a blue arrow showing the minutes. Here, a yellow S-shaped hand serves as the chronograph seconds indicator while a blue triangle serves as the indicator for the chronograph 30-minute counter and a yellow arrow displays continuous seconds.

Unlike the other two debuts, this model offers a crown that features Silberstein’s signature red triangle.

The Bell & Ross x Alain Silberstein BR 03 Krono 22 is powered by the caliber BR.CAL-301 automatic chronograph movement with date. Made in 100 examples, the watch is priced at $6,700.

Grail Watch is offering watches numbered 1 to 50 as a box set of all three timepieces, which will arrive in a Silberstein-designed collector’s box. Price for the set: $16,700. 

At the end of the year, it’s time to note our favorite 2022 debut watches. Through the end of the week, we’ll re-acquaint you with our top timekeepers of the year.

Below is our second installment of our four-day  review of our favorites, in no particular order.

 

Patek Philippe: Chronograph with Perpetual Calendar 

And among this watchmaker’s many 2022 chronograph debuts, look no further than the new Ref. 5373P-001, a split-seconds mono-pusher chronograph with perpetual calendar, for some true novelty. The watch differs from its predecessor (Ref. 5372) with newly inverted displays, pushers and crown.

Made for specifically “for the right-hand wrists of left-handers,” according to the watchmaker, the new 38.3mm platinum-cased watch is a premiere design for the company.

Patek Philippe notes however that a 1927 one-of-a-kind watch inspired the design of the new model. Like the earlier watch, the new watch features its integrated chronograph monopusher at the 9 o’clock position with the split-seconds pusher set, unusually, at 8 o’clock.

The sporty red, black  and grey dial on the Ref. 5373P-001 is cleverly finished with a black gradation at its edge, framing snailed ebony-black subsidiary dials.The watch’s beautifully finished caliber CHR 27-525 PS Q, still the thinnest split-seconds chronograph movement with perpetual calendar ever produced by the manufacture, can be admired through the sapphire-crystal display back, which is interchangeable with the solid-platinum back delivered with the watch. Price upon request. 

 

MB&F: M.A.D.1 Red

Collectors frustrated by very limited nature of the 2021 MB&F M.A.D.1 had a chance to score a new version of the watch, which is a very cool, affordably priced automatic watch with lateral time display and tricked-out upside-down Miyota movement.

Like that first watch, the newer red model also displays time via two highly luminous rotating cylinders around its case. Just as eye-catching is the unidirectional titanium and tungsten triple-blade rotor spinning quickly atop the watch. MB&F makes all this happen by fitting and re-engineering the watch’s Miyota movement upside-down in the M.A.D. 1 Red case.     

MB&F is making these special editions under a new brand name, M.A.D. Editions, and has long-term plans for additional models. Collectors who have previously contacted MB&F about the earlier M.A.D. Edition watch, or who already own an MB&F watch (or are MB&F Friends) are first in line to purchase the new watch. 

Given the price (CHF 2,900) and the pedigree of the new M.A.D.1 Red, the watch sold out quickly.

 

Zenith: Caliber 135 Observatoire Limited Édition 

Zenith teamed with Phillips and independent watchmaker Kari Voutilainen to restore and hand-decorate a batch of vintage Zenith Caliber 135-O movements. From the partnership, Zenith launched the Caliber 135 Observatoire Limited Edition, a stunning 38mm platinum chronometer watch rife with vintage design cues that complement the 1950s-era manual-wind movement inside.

The modern Zenith star logo on the dial may be the only contemporary design detail on this retro beauty. Its tapered lugs, sapphire glass box crystal, triangular hour markers, faceted gold hands and seconds subdial recall the mid-20th century era when Zenith routinely took prizes in Swiss chronometry competitions – frequently with its Caliber 135. 

With more than 230 chronometry prizes, the Caliber 135-O holds the most awards of any observatory chronometer caliber in the history of watchmaking.

In addition to hand finishing the movement (above), Voutilainen (through his atelier) also applied an eye-catching guilloché engraving in a fish-scale motif to the dial along the bezel. Inside the seconds subdial, you’ll find the movement’s serial number inscribed, a gesture meant to note that each movement, regulated originally by revered chronométriers Charles Fleck or René Gygax, has been updated by Voutilainen and his team.

Unusually, Zenith and Voutilainen has signed “Neuchâtel” at the bottom of the dial. This denotes the historical Observatory where the Calibre 135-O competed and won so many of it Swiss chronometry competitions. Zenith and Phillips offered the now sold-out watch as a series of ten, each priced at CHF 132,900.  Will we see more from this partnership in 2023? Let’s hope so. 

 

Bulgari: Octo Finissimo Sejima Edition

Especially notable among Bulgari’s late 2022 debuts are two special editions created in collaboration with Japanese designers. 

One watch of the pair, the Octo Finissimo Sejima Edition, is made with Japanese architect Kazuyo Sejima, and is one of our favorites for 2022.

Sejima, who holds the 2010 Pritzker Prize among many other architecture awards, focuses the eye with a mirrored dial under a dot-pattern sapphire crystal on her version of the eight-sided Bulgari Octo Finissimo. The effect is mesmerizing, especially with the entire dial framed in a 36.6mm polished stainless steel case.

According to Bulgari, the idea bring together a “contrast between material and transparency, the visible and the invisible,” which Sejima devised in part to reflect the aesthetic codes apparent in her architectural work. 

The architect’’s signature is inscribed on the sapphire crystal caseback, which opens up the  nicely decorated automatic Manufacture movement, BVL Calibre 138 – complete with (surprise!) a platinum micro-rotor. 

Bulgari will make the Octo Finissimo Sejima Edition as a 360-piece limited edition and will delivered it in a special mirrored steel box. Price: $14,100. 

 

Montblanc: 1858 Geosphere 0 Oxygen LE1786

Montblanc’s bronze-cased world timer is dominated by two rotating three-dimensional globes, marks the return of the watchmaker’s stunning blue glacier pattern dial placed within an oxygen-free case.

First seen during Watches and Wonders 2022 gracing the Montblanc 1958 Geosphere Chronograph 0 Oxygen, the dial is the result of using an old artisanal technique called gratté boisé, also found on the firm’s new 1858 Iced Sea Automatic collection.

Like with all Montblanc 1858 Geosphere models, both the Northern and Southern hemispheres are represented with two three-dimensional globes that turn anti-clockwise and include a day & night indication so that the wearer can see what time it is across the Earth with a simple glance.

Price: $8,600. 

 

Alpina: Seastrong Diver 300 Automatic Calanda, 

Alpina’s first timepiece made with a 100% recycled stainless steel case, the watch is named to pay tribute to the Calanda, the first ship to fly the Swiss flag. The timekeeper uses recycled steel sourced from the shipping industry and made by Thyssen Krupp. Alpina pairs the watch’s 42mm case with a recycled plastic wristband.

The Geneva-based watchmaker adds the new dive watch to its expanding lines of eco-friendly models. You might recall that Alpina also launched the Seastrong Diver Gyre Automatic collection in 2020. That watch features a case made largely (70%) from plastic fishing net debris. In addition, that model’s strap is made using recycled plastic bottles while its box is made from recycled plastic.

Available as a limited edition of 300 units, the Seastrong Diver 300 Automatic Calanda’s case is polished with a satin finish, while its unidirectional rotating notched bezel is brush-finished. Alpina embeds the hour and minute hands with vintage beige luminescence and tips the seconds hand with a red triangle Alpina logo.

As noted above, Alpina has paired the watch’s recycled case with a recycled plastic (PET) strap in grey and black. Each watch comes in a case entirely made from recycled plastic, alongside a single-page warranty and a certificate of authenticity printed on FSC Recycled-certified paper.

Price: $1,895.

Ulysse Nardin commemorates Veteran’s Day by launching the Diver Chronometer 44mm One More Wave, the second watch built in collaboration with One More Wave, a non-profit organization that assists wounded veterans through surfing and artistic therapy.

The new Ulysse Nardin Diver Chronometer 44mm One More Wave.

Rather than the 1,000-meter-water-resistant, 46mm Deep Diver with helium valve we saw in 2019 with the premiere One More Wave model, the new watch offers an ‘everyday wear’ option to buyers.

It draws from the watchmaker’s Diver collection of 44mm, 300-meter models with more classical crown placement and no helium valve. Ulysse Nardin outfits the new watch with its excellent in-house UN-118 automatic movement.

The Diver Chronometer 44mm One More Wave also more prominently displays the One More Wave iconography and features the organization’s distinctive turquoise color on its hands, the top of the bezel and on the lower strap connector (on the OMW logo). The watch’s black DLC titanium clear sapphire caseback is also engraved with the One More Wave logo.

Jean-Christophe Sabatier, Ulysse Nardin chief product officer, explains that for the new watch, Ulysse Nardin worked closely with One More Wave founder and former U.S. Navy SEAL Alex West and his members to strongly emphasize the organization.

“I particularly like the way the hands line up perfectly with the 0 at the top of the bezel and with the logo just below the case, all with the same color,” Sabatier says.

One More Wave founder Alex West.

The San Diego-based One More Wave has been assisting disabled veterans since 2015 and owns and operates its own surfboard factory to make custom surfboards for wounded and disabled veterans.

Now supporting 600 veterans, the organization aims to support 2,500 veterans with its ongoing fund-raising efforts. “We would not be the same organization we are today without the support from Ulysse Nardin,” says West. 

The Ulysse Nardin Diver Chronometer 44mm One More Wave is a limited edition of 100.  Price: $11,500.

 

Specifications: Ulysse Nardin Diver Chronometer 44mm One More Wave

 

Movement: Automatic Caliber UN-118 Manufacture, hours, minutes, small seconds, date, balance spring in silicon, escapement wheel & anchor in Diamonsil, fifty jewels, frequency of 28,800 Vph. 

Case: 44mm by 14.81mm titanium black DLC sandblast & satin-finished, titanium black DLC unidirectional rotating bezel, concave bezel with a domed sapphire glass, titanium black DLC case back with clear sapphire with OMW logo. Water resistance 300 meters. 

Dial: Black sandblasted dial and turquoise minutes, black indexes with white Superluminova, black hands with turquoise Superluminova, power reserve indicator at 12 o’clock, date and small seconds at 6 o’clock. 

Strap: Grey rubber with black ceramic element & turquoise lacquered OMW logo engraved on the element, black ceramic tang buckle.

Price: $11,500.