Watches: Baume & Mercier Clifton Chronograph Collection

By Thierry Ané on November 28, 2013

Although the Clifton collection draws its inspiration from vintage watches of the 1950s, Baume & Mercier’s designers have entirely reworked these design cues to create very contemporary watches. Considering how popular this collection is, it is almost unthinkable that it was only introduced this year.

As a sneak peek of the SIHH 2014, the brand is unveiling three new chronographs that will expand this successful collection already composed of automatic models, [113021 GMT watches], complete calendar moonphase pieces and even a flying tourbillon timepiece.

Design-wise, these new watches are faithful to the characteristics of all the pieces of this well-balanced collection. Quite rounded, with elegant lugs that seem to circle the bezel, the 43 mm stainless steel case is nicely finished with a combination of polished and brushed surfaces. As in other models of the Clifton range, the silver dial features a sun satin-finish and the combination of Arabic numerals and hour markers that makes it so legible. Lastly, the exhibition case back with the “Clifton” engraving and the recognisable rotor, with a mix of snailed décor and “Côtes de Genève”, confirm the lineage of these chronographs.

To suit various tastes, the brand introduced three versions of the Clifton chronographs. The urban version showcases blue hands that contrast nicely with the silver dial. Fitted with a black alligator strap, this model would work perfectly with a suit or a pair of jeans. With red gold-coloured hands and markers, as well as a brown alligator strap, the second version is surely the most faithful to the vintage look of the collection. Lastly, for those who prefer something sporty, a third version is available, always with the red gold-coloured hands and markers, but with a steel bracelet.

Baume & Mercier decided to rely on the famous ETA Valjoux 7750 movement to power the watch. This “tractor” is well-known in the industry for being extremely robust and reliable. When fully wound, this automatic movement offers 48 hours of power reserve to display the time, the date, and the day of the week (by two windows at 3 o’clock). It also features a chronograph function activated by the pushers on both sides of the crown.

Overall, these watches look really good and feel great on the wrist. I have no doubt they will be as successful as their Clifton siblings. If you are interested, you won’t have to wait too long: according to the brand, these chronographs should be available in stores in April.

Given the quality of this little preview, I really look forward to discovering the rest of the novelties. But we will have to wait until the 20th of January for that.