This year, Bentley turns 100. Sure, it’s hard to believe that the legendary British marque hasn’t been around since the dawn of time, but that’s one hell of a stretch for a car manufacturer. What better way to celebrate then, than leaning on one of the most enduring car / watch partnerships in the industry? Say hello to the Breitling Premier Bentley Centenary Limited Edition.
As a partnership, Breitling for Bentley dates all the way back to the misty past of 2003 and it’s the only one that’s actually lasted. It started with an on-board clock, quickly transitioned into a full-blown watch collection and now, here we are, with those same tenets of classical luxury redefined in the watchmaker’s newest collection, the Premier.
The 42mm rose gold case is the same sort of contemporary classicism as the rest of the collection, simple yet refined. What sets it apart however are the elements taken directly from its automotive counterparts – most notably, the dial.
Made from elm burl, the same kind of wood often used on Bentley dashboards, the grain on each watch is by its nature unique. That swirling grain also gives it the look of an heirloom or antique, at stark contrast with the matte black subdials and the inner bezel tachymeter. The dial is matched by the strap which, with its quilted stitching, is an even less subtle allusion to the interior finishing of a Continental GT.
Not one to skimp on a partnership this important, Breitling have equipped the watch with their in-house calibre BR01 chronograph movement. It’s a solid, COSC-certified movement, with a power reserve of 70 hours. It’s also impressive to look at, as you can see through the Centenary edition’s sapphire caseback. The caseback straight out says its inspiration with the Bentley logo and also lets you know just how limited this piece is with its inscription: One of 200.
If that’s a little too limited for you, there is also a steel version available. It’s still limited of course, but to 1,000 instead. It’s much the same as the rose gold edition, though if you look carefully you can see an inscribed plate on the left-hand side, a tribute to famous 1929 “Blower” Bentley.
Breitling and Bentley have created one of the most enduring love stories in the automotive watch world, one that’s outlasted every other coupling out there. With their centenary limited editions, it looks like it won’t be ending in divorce.
Price & Specs:
- Model Name: Breitling Premier B01 Chronograph Bentley Centenary Limited Edition
- Case: 42mm diameter, 18k red gold with a brown leather strap or stainless steel with a brown Bentley-inspired leather strap or stainless-steel bracelet, transparent caseback featuring a Bentley logo.
Dial: Wooden brown burl elm dial with black subdials (a chronograph minute counter at 3 o’clock and a small seconds subdial at 9 o’clock)
- Movement: Manufacture Caliber 01, in-house mechanical chronometer (COSC-certified)
- Power Reserve: 70h
- Price: £8,450 for the stainless-steel case with bracelet, £8,150 for the stainless-steel case with Bentley-inspired leather strap & folding buckle, £7,950 for stainless steel with Bentley-inspired leather strap & pin buckle, £22,500 for the 18k red gold case with Bentley-inspired leather strap & 18k red gold pin buckle. Prices exclude VAT.
Availability: Starting in July 2019
For more information visit Breilting’s website.