The new Broadsword models from Bremont capture the military feel perfectly. With a bronze case and dial designs inspired by the famous `Dirty Dozen’ movie, and the watches featured in the film, these are high-spec, hand-assembled watches built for a tough life. The 40mm bronze case has a dash of tin in there, which Bremont says helps durability. Naturally, there’s a sapphire crystal and three dial colour choices; slate, green/teal and tobacco brown. The BE movement has 31 jewels, and is something of a make or break project for Bremont.
Why? Well, Bremont have just invested a huge amount of cash in building a factory in the UK, and they are making their own in-house movements, after some critcism a few years back. Like many independent watch brands, Bremont started out buying in Swiss movements. But long term, if you want to compete at the luxury/collector end of the market, where buyers are forking out £3000-£6000 per watch, then you really have to go bespoke. Fact is, anyone can buy a really good auto/mechanical watch, bronze case, 300m dive rating, with an ETA/Sellita movement for £500. So you need to justify the price tag with technology and unique, `made in Britain’ appeal.
The sub-second dial is a nice touch, a nod to the old Dirty Dozen and `Arrow’ watches from WWII of course. But in some ways, it limits the appeal as it paints the Broadsword into an old fashioned corner. There’s no denying it’s a functional tool watch, but it won’t impress anyone with a keen eye for design. It lacks the visual punch of a Breitling Endurance for example, or the jet-age instrument cluster vibe of a Bell & Ross.
The new range feature each of the three main UK armed forces, Army, Navy and RAF on the caseback and are priced at £2995. Verdict? Wait for a limited edition VE Day/SAS edition to be released, then buy one of say 500 numbered watches. That’s far more likely to be a genuine collectors item one day.
More here at the Bremont site.