Bell & Ross R.S.20

These New Technical Chronograph Watches Are for Serious Motorsports Fans


March 10, 2020 Watches By

Editor’s Note: Watches & Wonders (formerly SIHH) and Baselworld 2020 are canceled but that hasn’t stopped watch brands large and small from debuting their new wares. To stay on top of this year’s best new watch releases, visit our tag page.

Bell & Ross is best known for its aviation-themed watches, but that hasn’t stopped the French brand from dipping into genres like diving and motor racing, as well. The DNA that makes those cockpit instrument-inspired watches successful translates well into a range of watches highlighting the brand’s partnership with Formula 1’s Renault racing team. For 2020, that DNA is expressed in several new, appropriately tech-y and serious-looking watches enlivened with sporty splashes of yellow.

The new watches span several collections, all denoted with the name “R.S.20” and all of which are chronographs — the complication historically most associated with motorsport. Another racing-inspired common trait: the checkered track at the dials’ edges, meant for measuring minutes or chronograph seconds.

These elements, as well as several others, help tie the watches together — but differences as significant as case shapes distinguish them from one another. The BR V3-94 R.S.20 uses a traditional, rounded case, and is priced at $4,400 on calfskin strap or $4,700 on steel bracelet; the other watches, however, use the brand’s most recognizable square case. But there are still similarities beneath the skin; the square, matte black ceramic-cased BR 03-94 R.S.20, for example, is powered by the ETA 2894-2 automatic chronograph movement, just like its round sibling, and it’s priced at $6,500.

If you’re looking for something even more serious, technical and expensive — well, options exist there, too. There’s a skeletonized version of the BR 03-94 that costs $21,500, as well as one with a tourbillon to top off the collection…at a knuckle-whitening price of $194,000.

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Zen Love

Zen Love is Gear Patrol’s watch writer. He avoids the snooty side of the watch world, and seeks out food in NYC that resembles what he loved while living in Asia for over a decade.

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