As much a work of art as it is an exquisite sample of precision mechanical engineering, the Bell & Ross BR-X2 Tourbillon Micro Rotor is one of the most novel watches to have appeared at Baselworld 2017. In a gala event last night in downtown Kuala Lumpur, the BR-X2 made its official Malaysia debut alongside the current BR-X1 collection of timepieces in a high-powered fashion show that saw models showcasing the timepieces to invited guests.
Rather than a traditional case hewn of steel or other metals, the squarish BR-X2 is built around a BR380 automatic movement which is then ensconced within an ultra thin stainless steel holder that is as thin as the movement itself. The movement sports hour and minute functions along with the eponymous tourbillon that gives the watch its moniker at the six o’clock position on the watch face. The hands themselves are coated in SuperLuminova for easier visibility in low light conditions.
This is then sandwiched between two plates of carefully polished sapphire that is then set into place with a quartet of screws, one on each corner, to create a remarkably thin 42.5mm thin case that is resilient as well as water resistant down to 50 metres. Completing the picture are a pair of authentic grey alligator straps along with a folding steel buckle that allows it to gently latch onto your wrist.
Bell & Ross General Manager for Asia, Mr. Tong Chee Wei waxed lyrical about the philosophy of design behind the BR-X2. Centered around Antoine de-Saint Exupery’s famous quote that “Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away,” the BR-X2 is as much a case of minimalism as it is the melding of case and movement into one harmonious whole without any distinction between either component with extraneous materials hewn away until the base elements of a timepiece remained.
Up-close you can view the distinctive Bell & Ross ampersand on the tourbillon as it moves along in its orbit. One can’t help but marvel at the intricacy of the BR-X2’s movements on account of the transparent sapphire case and watching it is a mesmerising affair with each of its myriad components moving along at different speeds but in complete harmony.
The feel of the watch was exquisite to the touch with the case itself feeling exceptionally light and well made befitting its maker’s mark subtly emblazoned across its front and rear.
…the BR-X2 is as much a case of minimalism as it is the melding of case and movement into one harmonious whole…
When worn on the wrist, the craftsmanship that went into the BR-X2 is apparent with the some 257 individual components that went into its construction working harmoniously together to present a beautiful mechanical symphony of precision. We took it around for a whirl around the proverbial dance floor: the strap itself was light and the latch itself snaps on with a reassuring click.
The whole affair was a delight to wear and proved exceptionally comfortable, making it ideal for daily wear rather than just only for special occasions. If you have RM284,000 in cash to spare and need an elegant art statement on your wrist, the BR-X2 is it.