Here are four models from the new Nubeo Black Mamba watch collection that have been made in partnership with Kobe Bryant. There are a few fantastic styles in this collection, and here are four versions that I have been fortunate enough to check out and share with you. The three styles here are the basic Black Mamba (chapter ring with hour and minute markers), the Black Mamba Ultimate (black sapphires on the chapter ring on the outer dial and Arabic numerals on the bezel), and the Black Mamba MVP (black or whiskey sapphires on the bezel and the dial chapter ring).
Last I heard, Kobe Bryant himself was sporting the Nubeo Black Mamba MVP with the natural whiskey sapphire stones - a truly awesome timepiece once you handle it. Let's check out the bling for a moment on these watches. It should be obvious why whiskey sapphires are named as such. Pour yourself a glass and you'll see a familiar color - oh, and they are also called orange sapphires. The Black Mamba MVP has 48 baguette cut stones on the chapter ring of the dial, 72 black sapphire round brilliant cut stones that line the chronograph subdials, and then another 48 baguette cut whiskey sapphires on the watch bezel. Nubeo's founder Ivan Castro is a skilled jeweler and it shows through not only the choice of stones, but the design and setting on the timepieces. Black sapphire stones are quite interesting. They certainly shine, but have a more under-the-radar style of luxury that asserts itself in confidence and pride of ownership each time you glance at the watch. The Ultimate is an interesting version is the Black Mamba with the precision-cut Arabic numeral bezel (with natural rubber inlay) and the black sapphires in the chapter ring - quite cool.
The Nubeo Black Mamba watch has the most complex watch case in the world that I previously discussed here. The cases themselves are made up of 131 parts. I was unclear as to the physical outcome of these complex cases until I got to handle the watches themselves, and I was instantly sold. As a testament to Nubeo's abilities, these complex cases are still 100 meters water resistant. This means that each piece of the watch case is so precision engineered that is still able to keep water and dust out of the watch despite having so many pieces that need to fit together just right. These watches are actually pre-production prototypes, so the final versions will have even more distinct lines and a higher level of finish - incredible. Nothing is totally impressive until you get a chance to wear the watch yourself, so if you get a chance, I highly recommend it.
Younger generations sometimes have trouble finding lust in more traditional ultra luxury watches. I think the Nubeo Black Mamba might at least be a partial solution to this problem. With prices starting at about $25,000 for the basic Black Mamba watches, and going up to $285,000 for the Black Mamba MVP watch models - these are by all means luxury to "high," or "ultra" luxury timepieces. They also have that Lamborghini type of appeal that is lost in so many other more traditional luxury watches. Sure there is a world of extravagant and complex luxury watch out there - many not traditional looking at all, but the Black Mamba seems to have a pop culture appeal that is just absent in some of the other [circa] $285,000 watches out there. Plus, it is all design and craftsmanship.
The movement inside the watch is a tried but true Valjoux 7750 automatic mechanical movement. A very mainstream and reliable movement. The application of the movement works, and Nubeo watches have never been about movement technical prowess, more about the complex engineering of the watch cases. Stop for a moment and consider this. So many watch makers spend years on complex movements that are only viewed by other watch makers for the most part - but they neglect having an interesting case and dial for the watches. Nubeo takes the opposite approach here by focusing on what you see and what is worn on your wrist everyday. Take it from me, a guy who has seen and worn A LOT of watches - Nubeo is very capable when it comes to making a very high quality case in terms of design and construction.
So, what is the Black Mamba watch made of other than jewels on some models? I will give you the run down of the major materials and leave it to Nubeo to show you how they are each applied. Ceramic is a major component in the case, especially the "lip" that fits so nicely over your wrist. There is also titanium, steel, and rubber. Click on the article above about the Black Mamba having the most complex case in the world to get some more details on that and some cool "explosion" shots. The watch is also big, but probably the most comfortable "big" watch I have ever worn. This is all due to Nubeo's clever and well-conceived design - much of which you'll notice, and some of which you'll only learn about years after wearing the watch as you discover new intricacies to the design.
Kobe looks stunning in this watch, and so will most people who are comfy with the avant garde looks. It is the most different looking watch you'll end up being chummy with right away when you wear it. It succeeds on so many levels, and the newer Nubeo brand is only going to get better - always looking to innovate and continue refining the core strengths that founder Ivan Castro brings as a corporate asset. Therefore it is a great brand to watch, and the Black Mamba is a serious player in the game of luxury sports watches or otherwise. See more about the Black Mamba watch at Nubeo here.