Since it’s founding, Bell & Ross has translated its fascination with aeronautics into the spirit of its watches, giving aviation tool-like qualities to its range of timepieces. In 2011, the company set its sights a bit closer to the ground—specifically on motorcycles—and designed an exclusive bike in collaboration with the British team at Shaw Harley Davidson Speed & Custom. The Nascafe Racer, as it was called, traveled the world and won a series of prizes.
In 2014, Bell & Ross took it a bit further, again creating a motorcycle with the engineers at Shaw Harley Davidson. This latest model, the B-Rocket, is inspired by the early jet planes designed in the U.S. in the 1960s. It is a concept bike with a streamlined aerodynamic design and a striking conical nose and low driving position that leaves one wondering if it will indeed take flight.
Every detail has been taken into consideration, from the strips of padded leather on the center of the fuel tank and turbines where knees rest, to the adjustable fins on either side of the fork used to increase or reduce contact with the ground. The rear section of the motorcycle is inspired by an aircraft cabin, and it uses more than 30 different sections of steel. The technical originality of the B-Rocket is evident in its two side-mounted turbines recalling two jet engines. Finally, a tachometer designed by Bell & Ross has been incorporated into the front to allow the rider to remain attuned to the machine’s “heartbeat.”
Two Brand New Watches
Not surprisingly, Bell & Ross launched two new watches in the wake of the B-Rocket: the BR 01 and BR 03, both with automatic movements and both with color schemes and materials evocative of the motorcycle for which they were named. The 46mm BR01 satin-polished steel chronograph has a large minutes counter with a tachymetric scale on the outer edge of the matte black dial. The skeletonized metallic hours and minutes hands are filled with SuperLuminova.
The 42mm satin-polished steel BR 03 features hours, minutes and seconds (top left on wrist). The matte black dial also has skeletonized metallic hours and minutes hands filled with SuperLuminova. The display also features a large date window and a power reserve indicator and cutouts that reveal the discs operating the large date window. The circular power reserve counter at 6 o’clock is reminiscent of the fuel gauge on racing motorcycles and cars.