March 21, 2023
Compared to iconic models such as the Navitimer and Chronomat, the Breitling Premier is hardly the most famous collection from the brand’s lineup; however, it’s certainly among the oldest with a history that dates back to 1943. As one of the most traditional models from Breitling’s modern catalog, the Premier is often the ideal Breitling collection for the person who normally feels that the brand’s watches are a bit too bold and “out there” for them, and it offers a classic design that is neither overtly dressy nor sporty, but rather somewhere in between. As part of the latest batch of new releases for 2023, six new Breitling Premier B01 Chronograph 42 watches are joining the lineup, including five stainless steel models and one in full 18k red gold.
At a quick glance, the six new Breitling Premier B01 Chronograph 42 watches almost seem like models that should already exist somewhere in the brand’s catalog. However, this is largely due to the fact that the new watches embrace colorways that are found on other models from the greater Premier lineup, such as the Duograph and Datora. Realistically speaking, these six new Premier models are not entirely new watches, and given how familiar they feel, they may not initially seem all that exciting. That said, the 42mm version of the Premier Chronograph is a core offering from Breitling’s modern catalog, and these six new models represent an important line extension that significantly expands this fan-favorite model and turns it into a true cornerstone offering.
Just like the existing Breitling Premier B01 Chronograph 42 models within the brand’s catalog, the new six models have cases that measure 42mm in diameter by 13.6mm-thick, with 22mm lugs and an overall lug-to-lug profile of 50.03mm. Similarly, cambered sapphire crystals with anti-reflective treatment sit above their dials, while their screw-down casebacks are also fitted with sapphire crystal display windows that offer a view of their self-winding manufacture movements. Just like all of the current-production Breitling Premier watches, the new B01 Chronograph 42 models feature signed push-pull winding crowns at the 3 o’clock location, which are flanked by a pair of oblong pushers that are dedicated to operating their stopwatch functionality.
From an external perspective, these six new 42mm B01 Chronograph models will be very familiar to those who have previous experience with the existing lineup, although based on the details included in the press release, the straps and bracelet have also received a couple of small refinements. The leather straps are available in either black or two different shades of brown, and they now offer a more significant taper from 22mm at the lugs down to 18mm where they connect to their signed stainless steel deployant buckles. Similarly, the seven-link bracelets fitted to the new Breitling Premier B01 Chronograph 42 watches feature a similar taper and now include butterfly-style folding clasps for a more refined appearance on the wrist. From an aesthetic standpoint, much of the core design has been carried over from the existing models, although the small updates to the straps and bracelets promise to offer a slightly more elevated feel on the wrist.
The five new models in stainless steel include dial colors in either black, blue, salmon, green, or cream, and although four of the models feature dials with rhodium-plated hands and markers, the cream dial variant features yellow gold accents for a thoroughly vintage-inspired overall appearance. Meanwhile, the solid 18k red gold Premier B01 Chronograph is exclusively offered with a cream-colored dial, although unlike the stainless steel model, the gold version features hands and markers in matching 18k red gold. Additionally, all six of the new Breitling Premier B01 Chronograph 42 watches are available with the option of either an alligator leather strap or a metal bracelet, with the gold edition featuring the collection’s signature seven-link bracelet in full 18k red gold.
Powering the new Breitling Premier B01 Chronograph 42 models is the brand’s Caliber 01 manufacture movement, which has become the go-to option for most of Breitling’s contemporary chronograph watches. Running at a frequency of 28,800vph (4 Hz) with a power reserve of approximately 70 hours, the Breitling Cal. 01 is an integrated automatic chronograph movement that operates with a column wheel and a vertical clutch. Just like nearly all modern Breitling watches, the new Premier B01 Chronograph models are COSC-certified chronometers, and while the core movement is the same across all six of the new models, the solid gold edition features its oscillating weight in matching 18k red gold.
When it comes to their official retail pricing, the stainless steel versions of the new Breitling Premier B01 Chronograph 42 come in at $9,100 USD when purchased on a leather strap and $9,500 USD on a bracelet. Meanwhile, the solid 18k red gold version costs $20,200 USD on a strap and $39,700 USD should buyers opt for the matching full red gold bracelet. These prices place the new Premier B01 Chronograph 42 right in line with other premium Breitling chronographs like the Navitimer, which ultimately seems rather appropriate given that they are powered by the same B01 manufacture movement. While many of Breitling’s models lean firmly into the instrument or sports watch direction in terms of their overall aesthetics, the Premier series is easily the brand’s most refined collection, and the latest batch of new models aims to further expand its mass-market appeal. For more information on the Breitling Premier B01 Chronograph 42, please visit the brand’s website.