In 2017, Bell & Ross launched their first ever BR 03-92 Divers watch, an instrument that delivered all the necessary equipment for underwater exploration within their legendary “circle within a square aesthetic”. Joining the collection today is the Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Diver Brown Bronze, yet another formidable diving watch combining a rare bronze case with a warm chocolate dial.
Bell & Ross first used bronze within their BR 03-92 Divers collection back in 2018, just a year after the collection’s debut. Named the Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Diver Bronze Black watch, it featured a classic black dial, a matching bronze bezel and a brown calfskin leather strap with a bronze pin buckle, all of which set the standard for the future B&R bronze watches to come including a blue dial, a green dial and a unusual but breathtaking red dial. Bronze could not be better suited to diving watches, having been used in nautical engineering for centuries due to its high corrosion resistance to saltwater. But what makes the material so popular with luxury watch enthusiasts? The answer: it’s naturally occurring patina which changes the colour of the case over time. This means that each and every case of the Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Bronze Brown watch will be unique to its wearer. Like the bronze BR 03-92 watches before it, the new Bell & Ross Bronze Brown Diver is limited to 999 pieces and features a 42mm by 42mm case engineered from CuSn8 bronze. To match, the bezel is also engineered from the patina-pending material and includes a brown anodized aluminium insert suitably detailed with a 60 minute divers scale. Also expectedly, the case features sapphire crystal glass with anti-reflective coating, a screw down crown, solid steel case back and is ISO compliant with a 300 metre water resistant rating. The Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Diver Bronze Brown watch secures to the wrist by a choice of two straps. The first is a handsome matte brown leather strap with beige top stitching, offering a nice neo-retro feel. The second is a more classic black braided rubber strap for underwater use. Both are fitted with bronze pin buckles. Housed within the case is the BR-CAL.302 automatic winding movement. Based on the Sellita SW 300-1, it delivers 25 jewels, a 4Hz frequency, a 38 hour power reserve and classic hours, minutes, seconds and date functions.
New for the Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Diver Bronze Brown watch is its dial which for the first time is decorated in a rich chocolate brown hue to pair with the brown aluminium bezel insert. The dial still delivers hardware we’ve come to expect including rounded rose gold-plated applique markers, baton-shaped hour and minute hands and a lollipop seconds hand, all of which are treated to white Superluminova inserts.
Bronze-cased divers are one of the hottest trends in the current luxury watch market. The warmth, patina, and nautical underpinnings of bronze have made it a popular choice for enthusiasts, but for the most part, bronze divers have been restrained to highly traditional designs. On paper, this trend makes sense, with brands aiming to tie the maritime legacy of bronze to equally legacy-driven silhouettes, but it leaves a wealth of unexplored venues for the reddish metal. Bell & Ross aims to shed this traditional association with its latest release, pairing a warm bronze case and earthy complementary colorway to its contemporary, fighter jet-inspired BR 03-92 platform. The new limited-edition Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Diver Brown Bronze presents a bold alternative to the safe and classical field of current bronze divers, presenting a rich and luxurious new colorway without sacrificing the brand’s unique spirit.
Measuring in at 42mm-wide and 12.05mm-thick, the bronze case of the Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Diver Brown Bronze uses the brand’s signature aircraft instrument-esque rounded square form. Although this squared-off shape should carry a sizeable presence on the wrist, Bell & Ross tempers this somewhat in images with its short, sharply downturned lugs. The CuSn8 bronze alloy Bell & Ross uses for this case carries a brighter rose-gold tone in images than many of the redder, more commonly used bronze alloys, and the brand showcases this luster with a variety of finishes. Radial and vertical brushing work to define the top and sides of the case in images, while an uninterrupted polished chamfer encircles the top edge of the case and adds a flash of brightness. The horizontally brushed wedge-shaped crown guards include oversized screws and black-filled engravings, maintaining the line’s function-forward, instrument-inspired ethos in spite of the flashier new case material. Although many current bronze watch offerings aim to impede the growth of verdigris on the case surface with special coatings or proprietary alloys, Bell & Ross looks to embrace the changing nature of bronze with this model and offers no special safeguards against patina. This lack of protection may prove divisive among enthusiasts, however. The brand tops this striking case with an anodized aluminum bezel insert in rich coffee-brown, which handsomely complements the bronze-tone dive scale in initial images. Around back, the brand equips the BR 03-92 Diver Brown Bronze with an intricately engraved stainless steel caseback featuring a dive helmet motif. Although this rounded-square shape may not follow the traditional dive watch pattern, its performance is undeniable, with a robust 300-meter water resistance rating that meets the ISO 6425 international standard for dive watches.