The Breitling Top Time that appeared in James Bond’s Thunderball is back
Plus, other watch news for this month.
Blast from the past
James Bond clearly has a soft spot for Omega and Rolex watches, but he has been known to sport a handful of other unique outliers such as the Breitling Top Time that appeared on the wrist of Sean Connery in Thunderball. The star power, friendly price and assortment of styles made the Top Time Breitling’s lure for young men in the 1960s. Well it’s back — in just one style this time — to win new hearts. There’s a lot for the retro-inclined to love here: the vintage Zorro dial, the red hands, the rarely seen decimal scale and a nubuck leather strap all win points for nostalgic appeal. It is modernly sized at 41mm and runs on the chronometer-certified Caliber 23. The limited-edition (2,000 pieces) will be sold exclusively online.
Out of the box To promote greater sustainability, Breitling will be replacing its traditional box and papers packaging with smaller pouches made from recycled materials while blockchain-based verification will replace most conventional watch papers.
With the 43mm case size, stylish star-shaped guilloche and applied Roman numerals, it’s hard to believe Montblanc’s new Star Legacy models were inspired by 19th- and 20th-century Minerva pocket watches. But the vintage nods are there. The Star Legacy Automatic Date 43mm and Star Legacy Chronograph Day&Date 43mm have smooth, pebble-shaped (albeit upsized) cases, onion crowns and leaf-shaped hands. They’re offered in stainless steel with bracelets or sfumato leather, and you can choose between an anthracite-coloured dial or a slightly more retro-ish ivory dial with rose gold accents.
There are always going to be those who would sooner eat their hand than swop their mechanical wrist candy for a quartz-powered model. Such diehards would have felt compelled to dismiss Cartier’s handsome Santos-Dumont collection from last year – even if they did secretly prefer its more streamlined design compared to the classic Santos models. The maison must have sensed this frustration because it has unveiled the manualwinding Santos-Dumont XL. The 430MC, a modified movement from sister brand Piaget, sits inside a slightly enlarged case measuring 46.6mm (lug to lug) by 33.9mm. With an overall thickness of just 7.5mm, it delivers slimness on top of sleek design.