Introducing The Bell & Ross BR-03 Gyrocompass Watch

Bell & Ross' flight-inspired Gyrocompass mimics state-of-the-art technology in a fun and practical way.


Bell & Ross is a French watchmaker creating a varied array of timepieces, but I’ll bet the first thing that came to your mind just then was their long list of aviation-inspired watches. It’s no secret that Bell & Ross loves aviation for the design principles that go into planes; co-founder Bruno Belamich said as much when I interviewed him eight years ago at the grand opening of their London boutique, based in the Burlington Arcade just next to Bond Street. 

Over the years Bell & Ross’ most interesting pieces come in the same squared cases as their more regular timepieces, but they take the dials to the aviation max. Flight instruments such as altimeters and artificial horizons are extremely cool, I would think that’s because most of us know what they are but have never sat behind them or used them on a regular basis. To have them on your wrist is one thing, but to implement them as a way of telling the time is on a whole different level.

Bell & Ross’ newest ‘Instrument’ watch, the BR 03 Gyrocompass, definitely implements aviation into a practical, wearable experience. In flight, the gyromagnetic compass, or gyrocompass, is equipped and used to indicate true north, it’s one of many, many pieces of equipment used by pilots to safely navigate in day or night conditions. Bell & Ross adapted this with ease for their first Gyrocompass model ten years ago, so it’s good to see they’ve still got it. The yellow jet-fighter-shaped hand shows the hours, while a triangle-tipped hand shows the minutes and a thin stick hand the seconds. There’s also a date window which I don’t think this needed, but it’s there.

Some have complained before about Bell & Ross’ square pilot-y watches being a bit difficult to wear due to their size and shape. This one should be a little easier, as the case is 41mm across and 10.6mm thick. The case is also made of black ceramic with a matte finish and comes on a supple black rubber strap.

Inside the watch is the BR-CAL.302 which is most likely based on a self-winding Sellita calibre. It has a power reserve of around 54 hours and a 4Hz beat rate.

This model is limited to 999 examples worldwide and retails for €4,500.