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Object of Desire: Bell & Ross BR 03-92 MA1 Watch

By Bianca Husodo

At this year’s leg of Baselworld, French company Bell & Ross continues to delve into its exploration between the two worlds of watchmaking and fashion. Headlining its new arsenal of square-faced watches is the BR 03-92 MA1 — a revamped pilot watch rendition of the house’s 2017 design — injected with a streak of American military-style cachet. Christened after the Dobbs Industries’ MA-1 flight — or better known as “bomber” — jacket that was first made in 1958 for jet aircraft pilots who flew in higher altitudes. The historical outerwear was typically reversible, featuring nylon khaki green as the outer and vivid orange as its lining, a high-vis signal for downed airmen.

The link between the jacket and the timepiece is then reflected in the detailing: a dark-khaki ceramic case, a stencilled sandwich dial with orange lume beneath, glowing through the numeral cut-outs of the upper layer — making it fully apt and functional for “night flights”, says the brand. Similar to the bomber, its calfskin leather strap is reversible: dark green as its outer with bright orange lining underneath. Fuelling the self-winding aviator timepiece is a Swiss Sellita SW300-1 automatic movement that houses 42 hours of power reserve and 100-metre water resistance.

Bell & Ross MA03-92 MA1 is available in a limited number of 999 pieces, price and availability upon request.