However, itís in the ocean that their range of marine diving watches have been put to the test and Bell & Ross even hold the World Record for water resistance (11,100 metres deep) which was earned by their classic HYDROMAXģ watch.
Their present range of diver watches sit in between the BR01 and BR03 aviation range. Called BR02, these watches are often overlooked and seem to get less press attention than the square instruments. However, for many true Bell & Ross fans, the BR02 collection offers an alternative look and given they can withstand up to 1000m deep in water, theyíre more than capable of standing their ground against their more popular siblings!
Keen to refresh the collection this year, Bell & Ross released two new variations on itís BR02 range and itís one of these models which are focussed here - the BR02-92 Phantom. This watch is available in TIME≤ at Selfridges, please enquire in store for more details.
Now I know what youíre probably thinking...A diving watch which is 100% black isnít exactly legible! Despite having huge water resistance, itís highly unlikely youíd be able to tell the time at say 500 metres deep using this watch. What theyíve done here is taken a very popular concept of a Ďblack-outí watch, first seen on the BR01 and applied it now to the BR02, but with a twist. Rather than simply re-colouring the dial of an existing BR02-92 theyíve redesigned the face and applied glossy indexes. In addition to this, theyíve added larger metal hands and a greyed out bezel marker around the edge, so when you look at the watch and it reflects the sunlight, itís just breathtaking!
As with the rest of the BR02 range, the chunky 44mm case remains the same. The heat of the watch is a quality Swiss ETA movement and it comes with a rubber strap which is curved and moulded around the case. Want a more luxurious look? Then itís worth upgrading to a black alligator strap if youíre happy to pay the extra premium.
Okay so itís probably not going to truly work as a deep diving watch, but if youíre like me and most of the watch owners I know, you donít go anywhere near that level of depth... However as a rugged masculine watch which screams luxury, itís hard to beat.
Iíve long been a fan of the BR02 range - these watches really are underrated and would highly recommend anyone interested in buying a Bell & Ross to try one on... even if you donít plan on getting it wet!
Why not browse our range of Bell & Ross watches online now.
Note: All photos shown are of a prototype model so some details may change.
Photos © Piers Berry 2011