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2021, Ready, Set, Chrono!
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2021, Ready, Set, Chrono!

Friday, 12 March 2021
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Christophe Roulet
Editor-in-chief, HH Journal

“The desire to learn is the key to understanding.”

“Thirty years in journalism are a powerful stimulant for curiosity”.

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4 min read

Brands are whetting our appetite ahead of the big reveals for 2021 with a bevy of new chronographs.

Among the (few) new models so far this year, chronographs confirm their status as one of the most popular complications.

Bell & Ross BR05 Chrono

Tagged as the watch for urban explorers, the Bell & Ross BR05 combines round and square shapes in a collection that launched in 2019. The latest addition, a Chrono with 30-minute counter, is cased in steel with an integrated bracelet. The angle where the two merge has been calculated for maximum comfort on the wrist, while the angled pushers and crown guard follow the shape of the 42mm case.

BR05 Chrono © Bell & Ross
BR05 Chrono © Bell & Ross
Breitling Top Time Deus Limited Edition

Breitling builds on its alliance with Deus Ex Machina for this limited-edition Top Time Deus that takes its cue from the 1960s original. Co-designed with the Australian lifestyle brand, highlights include yellow and orange accents on the dial and the squircle-shaped chronograph counters. The COSC-certified movement is Breitling’s Calibre 23 delivering 48 hours of power reserve.

Top Time Deus Limited Edition © Breitling
Top Time Deus Limited Edition © Breitling
Bulgari Octo Finissimo S Chronograph GMT

The Octo Finissimo needs no introduction. Its successive “world’s thinnest” titles include that of the thinnest chronograph, set in 2019 with the 3.30mm high BVL 218 calibre inside a 43mm wide/8.75mm high case. This year sees the return of the Chronograph GMT in steel, complete with a sunray blue dial matched with silver counters for a stylish and sporty look. The GMT display is in a subdial at 3 o’clock.

Octo Finissimo S Chronograph GMT © Bulgari
Octo Finissimo S Chronograph GMT © Bulgari
Chopard Alpine Eagle XL Chrono

A flyback chrono joins the Alpine Eagle collection that was introduced in 2019 in Dubai. This new addition, which includes a date display, is fitted with the Chopard 03.05-C automatic movement that is COSC-certified and provides 60 hours of power reserve. Both the extra-large 44mm case and the integrated bracelet are made from Lucent Steel A223, a proprietary alloy that is produced by re-smelting. The resulting metal is stronger than conventional steel, anti-allergenic and has a lustrous, light-reflecting sheen.

Alpine Eagle XL Chrono © Chopard
Alpine Eagle XL Chrono © Chopard
Hublot Big Bang Integral Grey Ceramic

Launched at the start of 2020, the Big Bang Integral in steel was the first Big Bang with an integrated bracelet. After a second version in black ceramic, Hublot is adding more colours to the line-up with white, blue and grey. Ceramic is very much part of Hublot’s identity. The perfect fusion of hardness and lightness (two to three times harder than steel and 30% lighter), it is used here for the case, caseback, bezel and bracelet.

Big Bang Integral Grey Ceramic © Hublot
Big Bang Integral Grey Ceramic © Hublot
IWC Pilot’s Watch Chronograph Edition “Tribute to 3705”

IWC is releasing this chronograph in honour of its “Black Flieger” reference 3705, a 1994 model in ceramic. Largely ignored at the time of its launch, it’s now one of the most sought-after watches from IWC’s recent history. This new edition stays true to the design of the original, but with a case that replaces ceramic with Ceratanium, an exclusive titanium alloy that is as hard as ceramic.

Pilot’s Watch Chronograph Edition “Tribute to 3705” © IWC
Pilot’s Watch Chronograph Edition “Tribute to 3705” © IWC
Montblanc 1858 Monopusher Chronograph Origins Limited Edition 100

This new release is a reissue of a Minerva 46mm military monopusher chronograph from the 1930s. Distinguished by a black dial and luminescent vintage elements, this was in fact the main inspiration for the entire 1858 collection, hence the “Origins” in the name. This limited-edition version is cased in bronze with an officer back that opens to reveal the in-house MB M16.29 movement.

1858 Monopusher Chronograph Origins Limited Edition 100 © Montblanc
1858 Monopusher Chronograph Origins Limited Edition 100 © Montblanc
Omega Seamaster 300M America’s Cup Edition Chronograph

As official timekeeper and sponsor of the defending Emirates Team New Zealand, Omega follows up its Seamaster Planet Ocean with a second release commemorating the 36th America’s Cup, namely this Seamaster 300M Chronograph. Produced as a non-limited edition, it features the new Chrono Lock system, interchangeable straps, soft-touch rubber pushers and a regatta countdown.

Seamaster 300M America’s Cup Edition Chronograph © Omega
Seamaster 300M America’s Cup Edition Chronograph © Omega
TAG Heuer Carrera Porsche Chronograph 44mm

In February TAG Heuer and Porsche announced their new strategic alliance, a natural step for two brands that are no strangers one to the other. Product-wise, the partnership has already produced this 44mm Carrera which is modelled on the “Sport” chrono with a tachymeter scale on the bezel. Among the multiple references to Porsche and racing is the asphalt-like dial surface.

Carrera Porsche Chronograph 44mm © TAG Heuer
Carrera Porsche Chronograph 44mm © TAG Heuer
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Chronograph Silver

Produced as a 250-piece limited edition, this Pilot Type 20 Chronograph Silver is a reminder of Zenith’s exploits as a maker of pilot’s watches – including one that crossed the English Channel with Louis Blériot in 1909. The solid silver case of this Type 20 surrounds a silver dial whose rivet detail recalls the rivets that secured the body panels on historic aircraft. The irregular satin-brushed finish brings out the raw beauty of the metal.

Pilot Type 20 Chronograph Silver © Zenith
Pilot Type 20 Chronograph Silver © Zenith
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