Bronze as a material in watchmaking is here to stay; that much is certain. What started as a trendy material about a decade ago turned into a regular thing nowadays. Every year we get to see new adaptations of the corrosion-resistant material, with brands experimenting with bronze across the board. It wasn’t until recently, however, that the phenomenon of patina was addressed. To counter the production of patina, brands started to introduce special alloys that prevented massive patina build-up and limit tarnishing over time. Things have developed to such an extent that we even see full bronze watches now, so all the more reason to focus on bronze in today’s buying guide.
TUDOR BLACK BAY BRONZE
It’s not often we see a full bronze watch, but the recently introduced Tudor Black Bay Fifty-Eight Bronze is a real winner. Made from a special aluminium and bronze alloy, it features all the material traits, minus the heavy patina. The alloy Tudor uses gathers a minimal amount of patina over a long period of time. Nevertheless, it will adapt a unique tone when worn, depending on how often the owner wears it.
The introduction of the full bronze bracelet to go with the bronze case wasn’t the only new thing for this watch. It also features a new smokey dial and bezel colour, in line with recent trends. Finally, a very welcome folding buckle with a micro-adjustment system (called T-Fit by Tudor) was introduced as well. One might argue that Tudor leans too heavily on big sister Rolex, but can you blame them?
Quick Facts – 39mm brushed bronze case – brushed bronze bracelet and folding buckle with micro-adjustment – gradient matte brown dial with matching bezel insert – manufacture calibre MT5400 – silicon balance spring – COSC certified – 70h power reserve – EUR 4,250
For more information, please visit Tudorwatch.com
Hamilton Khaki Field Mechanical Bronze
Hamilton is well-known for providing very good, historically inspired watches at an affordable price. The Khaki Field Mechanical collection is no exception and is priced well below EUR 1,000. Naturally, this funky, almost steampunk-like bronze edition follows the same principles.
The 38mm case keeps the size well within the vintage dimensions a lot of people like. It is, however, equipped with a modern, hand-wound movement, the Hamilton H-50 calibre (base ETA 2801). This calibre runs at 21,600vph and has 80 hours of power reserve. It is part of the permanent collection of Hamilton.
Quick Facts – 38mm CuSn8 bronze case – titanium caseback – matte black dial with 12h and 24h notation – hand-wound Hamilton H-50 calibre – base ETA 2801 movement – brown calf leather NATO strap – 80 hours of power reserve – EUR 745
For more information, please visit Hamiltonwatch.com.
Maurice Lacroix Venturer Bronze Anthracite
The Aikon collection that Maurice Lacroix introduced only several years ago has become a brand bestseller. By now, the collection has expanded into time and date models, chronographs, GMT watches and, of course, divers. Earlier this year, we saw a new Aikon Venturer, the dive watch in the Aikon range, with a bronze case and a sunburst-brushed anthracite dial.
With a diameter of 43mm and a height of 12mm, it is not exactly a small watch. But that’s not an issue, as the combination of the anthracite dial, dark rubber or leather strap, and that bronze case deserves a bit of size to back up its wrist presence. And, above all else, it is a proper dive watch with a water-resistance of 300 metres.
Quick Facts – 43mm diameter x 12mm height – bronze case – bronze unidirectional bezel with ceramic insert – titanium caseback – sunburst-brushed anthracite dial – automatic ML115 Calibre, Sellita SW200-1 base – black rubber or anthracite leather strap with a quick-release system – limited to 500 pieces – EUR 2,450
For more information, please visit MauriceLacroix.com
IWC Big Pilot’s Watch Big Date Spitfire Edition “Mission Accomplished”
This is the big one of this list, both in size, wrist presence and price. The IWC Big Pilot’s Watch Big Date Spitfire Edition “Mission Accomplished” is a limited edition watch dedicated to “The Longest Flight”. On 5 August 2019, pilots Steve Boultbee Brooks and Matt Jones flew a fully restored Silver Spitfire (with a polished aluminium body) for a total of almost 43,000 kilometres around the globe.
To commemorate the end of that monumental adventure – say Mission Accomplished – IWC created this special watch. It featured a 46.2mm wide bronze case with a signature diamond-shaped crown and matte green dial. As the name suggests, the watch has a big date indication. And, of course, being a Big Pilot’s Watch, it is extremely legible. Priced at EUR 16,600, it is limited to just 500 pieces.
Quick Facts – 46.2mm diameter x 15.2mm height – matte bronze case and crown – embossed titanium caseback with sapphire window – calibre IWC 69235 in-house hand-wound movement – hours, minutes, small seconds, big date, power reserve (on the back) – limited edition of 500 pieces – EUR 16,600
For more information, please visit IWC.com
Longines Legend Diver Bronze No-Date
The Legend Diver by Longines needs no introduction. The iconic compressor-style dive watch has been part of the collection since 2006, when it was presented as a faithful recreation of an original dive watch from the 1960s. In recent years it has seen a refreshed look with new gradient dials in multiple colours and, of course, a bronze case as well.
There’s always a debate between date and no-date fans regarding the Legend Diver, but to cater to the purists, this lacks the indication for the date of the month. Presented in a bright, brushed bronze case, it comes with a gradient dark green dial. It gives the Legend Diver a completely different appeal and simply put, it looks quite stunning.
Quick Facts – 42mm diameter x 13.5mm height – brushed bronze case with titanium caseback – gradient dark green dial – compressor-style case with internal rotatable bezel – Longines L888.5 calibre, base ETA A31.L11 automatic movement – brown leather, and green NATO strap included – CHF 2,800
For more information, please visit Longines.com.