The connection between the Paris-based watchmaker and the French Formula 1 team started back in 2016 when it was still named Renault F1. Now, and even if the name has changed to Alpine F1 Team, the relationship between both parties is still fully active with the same passion for racing and bold designs. Following previous editions based on the Renault F1 or Alpine F1 connection, it’s now time for a new collaboration watch, which draws on this year’s livery and adds a stealthy, technical touch. Here’s the new Bell & Ross BR 03-92 A522 Alpine F1 Limited Edition.
When it was renamed Alpine F1 in 2021 (still using the same team and facilities as the previous Renault F1 team – both brands owned by the Renault Group), Bell & Ross seized the opportunity to change the look of its F1-themed collection quite drastically. Previously using the colour yellow as the main marker of the range, the new team has Alpine in its name… And Alpine is immediately associated with the colour blue, which also happens to be the French national colour, used for decades in motorsport. It’s all about a French connection.
Last year, Bell & Ross presented its first Alpine-themed collection with three models – the BR V3-94 A521, the BR 03-94 A521 and the BR-X1 A521. Modelled after the car racing in the 2021 season, it was all about blue accents over steel cases. This year, for the 2022 season, cars have drastically evolved with an entirely new set of rules, giving birth to cars with a strong and fluid design. And in this vein, the new Alpine A522 has also changed livery. Be reassured, it’s still very much blue… And so is the new Bell & Ross BR 03-92 A522.
Last year, the brand used steel as the main component for its limited-edition models. Now, for the 2022 collection, we have only one model (for the moment), and it’s using the emblematic square case with four screws in the corner, and it’s done in matte black ceramic for a stealth look and increased resistance. Based on the BR 03-92, this new Alpine limited edition measures 42mm x 42mm, with a height of 10.4mm and is water-resistant to 100 metres.
The dial of this new edition, which is a rather simple time-and-date model (not a chronograph), matches this year’s livery, minus the pink accents – for the best, maybe. Matte black, the dial features Arabic applied numerals and blue accents, mostly on the Alpine-shaped seconds hand and on the raised inner flange, the latter featuring a precision minutes/seconds scale. All elements are generously filled with Super-LumiNova. And although the date has not been removed, it’s now located in a framed window at 6 o’clock, which looks more balanced than the circular window at 4:30.
Complementing this racing look is a perforated black rubber strap closed by a PVD-coated pin buckle. A black synthetic fabric strap is also included. The BR 03-92 A522 is powered by the automatic BR-CAL.302, which is the internal name for the Sellita SW300 – a 4Hz automatic movement with a 42h power reserve.