Bell&Ross revs up with the new Alpine F1 racing team with three new limited edition chronographs pithily named BR V3-94 A521, BR 03-94 A521 and BR-X1 A521. This is part of a continuation of the watchmaker’s partnership with Formula One racing since 2016; the Alpine F1 team was formerly known as the Renault F1 team. If you know a thing or two about racing, you will guess that the team colours are changing so any dedicated watch collection must follow suit. Congratulations, because there is indeed a new Bell&Ross Alpine F1 Team collection of three chronographs, each one dressed up in the team’s Alpine blue, black and white livery.
All models also feature the Alpine team’s logo as the counterweight on the central chronograph hand. All three are variants of existing models, which you can easily suss out by the names: BR V3-94 A521, BR 03-94 A521 and BR-X1 A521, with the A521 portion signifying the particular characteristics of each new limited edition chronograph. This is a reference to the Alpine racing single-seater model A521. The latter two models have featured prominently in WOW and LUXUO over the years, and these new 2021 editions will be welcome additions.
What is notable here are the variations within variations, attendant limited status, and we will begin with the Bell&Ross BR V3-94 A521, since the base model has received comparatively little attention from us. With the round 43mm BR V3-94 A521 in steel, there are two versions and both are limited to 500 pieces. One comes with a steel bracelet while the other sports a black and blue calf leather strap that has a carbon fibre look to it. Both have folding clasps, and of course both are powered by the automatic calibre BR-CAL.301. Bell&Ross fans will recognise this movement as the same one beating within all versions of BR 03-94. Perhaps even more obvious than this is the shape of BR V3-94 A521, which remains unusual for Bell&Ross, even if it is more in-line with sports watches everywhere.
Moving on, the BR 03-94 A521 is the version with the date window at 6 o’clock, and it shares the French flag on the dial, just as BR V3-94 A521 does. This is a nod to the Alpine team’s heritage but works just as well for Bell&Ross itself. This version is limited to 500 pieces. The flag touch is absent from the BR-X1 A521, which is just as well considering everything else competing for the eye here. This is of course the top of the line model in this set of three chronographs; it is limited to 50 pieces.
Finally, depending on when you are reading this and where you are, the watches are all beginning with a pre-order run, with delivery for the BR V3-94 A521 and BR 03-94 A521 starting in July, and BR-X1 A521 in September.