Baume & Mercier held down the sub-$5,000 offerings for Watches & Wonders 2020, and they did it damn well. Using its in-house five-day power reserve Baumatic movement to produce the new Clifton Day-Date Moon Phase and Moon Phase Date watches, Baume & Mercier delivered what many of us asked for when first seeing last year’s Perpetual Calendar (that came in a gold case with a ~$25,000 price tag). While the Day-Date Moon Phase in steel is the standout piece from the brand for 2020, the simpler Moon Phase Date brings a different mood to the table, with a white dial that has a porcelain effect. This has been used in previous models, but I do not believe it has been the backdrop for a moon phase.

I know, we didn’t get the Perpetual Calendar in steel yet, but I can’t imagine even that being less than five-figures.

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Brand: Baume & Mercier
Model: Clifton Baumatic Day-Date Moon Phase
Dimensions: 42mm-wide, 13.2mm-thick in steel (12.95mm-thick in pink gold)
Water Resistance: 50M
Case Material: steel or pink gold
Crystal/Lens: sapphire
Movement: in-house Baumatic BM14 1975 AC2
Power Reserve: 5 Days (120 hours)
Strap/Bracelet: blue alligator leather
Price & Availability: 4,000 CHF in steel; 13,800 CHF in pink gold

Brand: Baume & Mercier
Model: Clifton Baumatic Moon-Phase Date
Dimensions: 42mm-wide, 13.2mm-thick
Water Resistance: 50M
Case Material: Steel
Crystal/Lens: Sapphire
Movement: In-house Baumatic BM14 1975 AC1
Power Reserve: 5 Days (120 hours)
Strap/Bracelet: blue alligator leather or steel bracelet
Price & Availability: 3,650 CHF on strap; 3,800 CHF on bracelet

Done with a gradient gray lacquered dial, the Day-Date Moon Phase finds a novel way to achieve symmetry by having the logo at 9 o’clock and the Baumatic 5 Days text at 3 o’clock. I know it’ll bother people who think “any text=clutter,” but the overall design works so well that I can’t linger on a picked nit for long. The typography is distinct to Baume & Mercier, and the 12 o’clock/6 o’clock layout of the complications is the ideal layout.

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As for the Moon Phase Date model, things get cleaned up due to the less elaborate complication, but we still have the same design language. This includes those alpha hour and minute hands that are the right length, which is, sadly, a feature that needs to be called out when executed properly. And as I said before, I think the white dial that evokes a porcelain look could be beautiful with the moon phase. Again, can’t make the final judgment until seeing it in person.

The open-worked rotor finished with Geneva stripes seen from the exhibition caseback is a nice additional touch. There is considerable perlage aka circular graining work done on both these variants of the Baumatic BM14. Speaking for myself, it verges on “too much of a good thing” but fortunately, there is also snailing on the sandblasted plate to add variety.

Baume & Mercier is Richemont’s most entry-level brand, and these new pieces released for Watches & Wonders 2020 look to be highly promising, especially the steel variants. I look forward to going hands-on with both of them. Again, the Baume & Mercier Baumatic Clifton Moon Phase Date is priced at 3,650 CHF on strap and 3,800 CHF on bracelet, and the Baumatic Clifton Day-Date Moon Phase is priced at 4,000 CHF in steel and 13,800 CHF in pink gold. You can learn more at

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