Revisiting top 3 Carl F. Bucherer novelties from 2019
Carl F. Bucherer is one brand that’s been on my radar for a while now. And ever since Sascha Moeri took over the reigns as CEO in 2010, they have been going from success to success. 2019 was no different. And while we wait to see what the brand from Lucerne has in store for us this year, here’s looking at the top 3 Carl F. Bucherer novelties from 2019.
Heritage BiCompax Annual
I gotta be honest; I am in love with big date display windows. Usually the master of this art is the German manufacturer A. Lange & Söhne. But a relatively less known player — the brand Bucherer have been in the watch industry since 1888 but came to a new life in the form of Carl F. Bucherer only in 2001 — on the market is sure giving them a run for the money (or at-least my money). The last year’s additions to Carl F. Bucherer’s Heritage collection — launched in New York in 2018 as an ode to the 130 years rich history of the brand — saw a watch that not only made me sit up and downright stare, but also made it hard for me to ignore this brand anymore. I say ignore because they don’t really have a presence here in Australia.
The Heritage BiCompax Annual comes in two versions: champagne-coloured dial on a steel case with rose gold accents featuring a cognac brown calfskin leather strap; or full stainless steel case sporting a silver-coloured dial with black totalisators on a textile strap.
It is the latter version that speaks to us. It is just so damn geometrically symmetrical — two symmetrically arranged totalisators are positioned on the horizontal central axis and framed by a tachymeter scale — and architectural balance endowed.
The 1950s sports racing nostalgia is oozing from every aspect of the watch. It has been inspired by their vintage BiCompax watch from 1950s that featured a sporty yet elegant design, though it measured in at only 34mm in diameter.
The black and white combination is classic and full on confrontal. The big date at 12’o clock just stares at you in all its glory. My only beef? The oddly placed at 4.30 and minuscule in size, the month window. Just, no. Simply no. Perhaps the brand needs to move it to the back, or have it at 6’o clock mirroring the large date window. Besides this aspect, the watch is simply a stunner. And a Swiss made Annual calendar for the price of only 7’200 USD (steel) or 10’500 (stainless steel/rose gold) is a steal.
Quick Tech Specs: The references 00.10803.08.12.01 (stainless steel) or 00.10803.07.42.01 (stainless steel/rose gold) are produced in limited numbers of 888 each and feature the calibre CFB 1972 which is an automatic-winding outsourced — Dubois-Depraz module over ETA 2892 — but manufacture modified movement. The movement measures 30mm in diameter and 7.3mm in height, comprises of 47 jewels, and is encased inside a 41.0mm diameter and 14.05mm thick stainless steel or stainless steel/18k rose gold case. The watch offers an okay 42-hour power reserve. The watch face shows the functions of central hour and minutes, chronograph seconds hand, small seconds at 3’o clock, minutes counter at 9’o clock, annual calendar at 4.30, large date at 12’o clock and a peripheral tachymetre scale.
Manero AutoDate LOVE
Before we go into the watches and their various versions, I would downright admit that the stunning petrol blue version is so mesmerising that even though the watches are small coming in at 35.5mm and are intended for women, I would personally love to buy one for myself. It’s just such a unique colour that it would add a certain mischievous spark to my otherwise masculine collection. The sun-ray pattern dances in the light and the concentric circles of the sub-dial add for a great visual textural play. The applied and polished indices work well against the blue dial and provide for decent legibility.
The watch comes in nine elegant variations marked by two bold colours (and white mother of pearl) and has been created in partnership with the international movie star Li Bingbing’s foundation called L.O.V.E. Responsible Life. This foundation supports various charitable projects and campaigns for people to adopt an environmentally responsible lifestyle. This Manero version takes its name from the foundation and features its emblem on the dial that has been integrated into the small-seconds sub-dial at 6’o clock. The emblem takes the form of a leaf that symbolises environmental protection and a plea for more humane values.
The Manero AutoDate LOVE collection comes in a staggering nine variations.
- 00.10922.03.93.11 (gold, red dial, 62 diamonds)
- 00.10922.07.93.01 (two-tone, red dial)
- 00.10922.07.93.21 (two-tone, red dial, bracelet in steel/rose gold) 00.10922.07.53.01 (two-tone, petrol blue dial)
- 00.10922.07.53.21 (two-tone, petrol blue dial, bracelet in steel/rose gold) 00.10922.08.53.01 (steel, petrol blue dial)
- 00.10922.08.73.01 (steel, white mother-of-pearl dial)
- 00.10922.08.73.11 (steel, white mother-of-pearl dial, 62 diamonds) 00.10922.08.73.21 (steel, white mother-of-pearl dial, steel bracelet)
Quick Tech Specs: They feature the calibre CFB 1971 which is an automatic-winding movement measuring 26.2mm in diameter and 4.35mm in height, comprising of 31 rubies, and encased inside a 31.5.0mm diameter and 09.15mm thick case. The watch offers an okay 42-hour power reserve. The watch face shows the functions of central hour and minutes, a seconds hand at 6’o clock and a date window at 3’o clock on either a red with gold dust, petrol blue, or white mother-of-pearl dial. To complete the elegant look, they come on a Louisiana alligator-leather strap in either red, petrol blue, or purple with a stainless steel/18 k rose gold or stainless steel bracelet. We are happy to note that Carl F. Bucherer hasn’t gone with the traditional use of a quartz movement for a ladies watch and has put in an effort to include a mechanical movement whose fine finishing can be admired through a sapphire crystal display caseback. The watches start from 3’400 USD onwards.
Patravi ScubaTec Black Manta Special Edition
After premiering and making waves at Baselworld 2019, the watch was finally released in the last quarter of 2019. These come hot on the heels of the Patravi ScubaTec Manta Trust Limited Edition of just 188 watches launched back in 2017. In an overcrowded dive watch market, I think the Patravi collection stands out firmly. Combined with Carl F. Bucherer’s partnership with the UK-based charity Manta Trust charitable organisation, these watches are a delightful offering at a pretty good price point. Coming with the feel good factor of support for the conservation of the oceans and the black manta ray species, these COSC-certified dive watches are also full of elegant sporty aesthetics. The legibility of the dial is amazing, and perhaps the only flaw I can find is with the slightly less power reserve of only 38-hours.
The dials for dive watches can sometimes be either too plain or cluster-fu$%s. The dial on the Patravi ScubaTec Black Manta Special Edition however is just perfect: it’s got high legibility with wide and bold indexes and hands that are Super-LumiNova adorned; the date window is sharp and clear at 3’o clock; the texture on the dial is visible yet restrained; and the subtle bronzed silhouette impressions of two mantra rays on the black dial helps identify these from a distance while complimenting the bronzed colour on the bezel. And then there is the strap with matching colour stitching. It’s not just the colour layout, but also the material that is impressive about this strap: the natural rubber strap is composed entirely of around 30 recycled bottles recovered from the Mediterranean Sea.
Quick Tech Specs: The reference 00.106188.8.131.52 features the calibre CFB 1950.1 which is an automatic-winding, COSC-certified movement. The movement measures 26.2mm in diameter and 4.6mm in height, comprises of 25 jewels, and is encased inside a 44.6mm diameter and 13.45mm thick DLC-coated titanium case. The watch offers an okay 38-hour power reserve along with a very impressive 500m (50 ATM) water resistance. The watch face shows the functions of central hour, minutes and seconds, along with a date window at 3’o clock. The watch case also features an unidirectional rotating titanium/ceramic bezel that enables the wearer to set the dive time and an automatic helium release valve at 8’o clock along with a screw-down crown at 3’o clock and a DLC-coated titanium case back with a detailed engraving of a black manta ray. The best part, the watches cost a reasonable 7’200 USD.
If you like these watches, keep tuned as we will be featuring a lot more of Carl F. Bucherer on our website.
For more information on these watches, head to their websites via the link here: Carl F. Bucherer.