Oris is known for its affordable watches that offer class-leading design and build quality. These watches are seriously well renowned right across the industry as being innovative and sturdy while still containing fashion elements. Their red oscillating mass in their window displays in retailers immediately makes them stand out, and this new Hölstein limited edition only helps with that further.
This is the first Swiss-made bronze watch to come with a bronze bracelet as well. Bronze is not a new material for watches. We’ve seen it on loads of sporty and masculine pieces from Bell & Ross to Panerai, even Oris has made bronze watches before, but this is the first time we see bronze being used in the bracelet as well. Bronze was immensely popular among watch fans due to its ability to change hues in different temperatures and develop a rich patina over time. Of course, the focus of that sentence should be the term was, bronze is still relatively popular, but the majority of hype has moved towards blue dials and smart/casual sports watches. Even Panerai doesn’t make a song and dance about bronze like it used to.
The watch dial is gold plated with black subdials and white lume. It’s good to see that they didn’t go with a full ‘fauxtina’ lume colouration here, it’s another trend that needs to see some restraint from the watch manufacturers. Encompassing the dial is a narrow bronze bezel that’s unidirectional like a diver’s watch with embossed numerals and markers.
Of course, the real attraction of this piece is the bronze bracelet. You might, therefore, be surprised to know that it isn’t entirely bronze. While bronze is excellent at developing patina, it’s also very soft in comparison to stainless steel. Using bronze exclusively in the bracelet would see the pin bars and clasp mechanism warping and becoming unusable over time. To solve this, stainless steel has been used, and you’ll also find it covering the movement, engraved with the Oris bear. Going back to the bracelet a moment, it’s exciting to see that every link has a screw, meaning you can remove any link you like. Also, the prospect of this watch’s multi-link bracelet patinating over time is exciting, as no two of them will ever be the same.
Inside the watch is a Sellita SW500-1 movement which Oris calls the calibre 771. It has a respectable 48-hour power reserve and a 4Hz beat rate, as well as a date and chronograph function for good measure. The fact that it’s not an in-house movement means the material cost of using bronze, as well as the research that went into it, is lower. Although it is still a little high at $5200, only 250 examples of this watch will be made.