I have to get back to one thing I mentioned earlier on about the automobile design influences. Though it can be divisive for watch fans, there are a quite a few watches out there that are inspired or modeled after automobiles. We have seen Bremont partner with Jaguar recently, and this is just one of many instances where design teams join together with a fundamental goal to take some of the soul from a particular car or bike for use in a watch. Successful or not, I am not going to get into, though I’m sure some commenters won’t be able to resist.


Sartory-Billard, rather than single out one model in particular, have instead included an amalgamation of automotive attributes that can be seen throughout their pieces. This is fine, and in some instances easier on the brand due to the fact that not every fanboy ends up picking apart the watch for failing to include “x” or “y” in the final product. In that sense, there is a little more leeway with this approach.

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I enjoyed wearing both watches, and the fact that you can switch the straps with their quick-change system made it really fun to swap them out. I wish more brands would do this. Yes, of course I own a link kit and can switch out normal straps anyways, but I can appreciate any watch that makes it easy for me to do so without tools (or scratches). You have two strap options, one is a classic black leather, and the other is what Sartory-Billard calls a “beef” strap that is more supple and features a clasp.

Speaking of the straps, each one comes equipped with 2 NFC chips embedded in the material. The idea is that you can automate actions with the chips to anything from smart-home functions to smartphone tasks like playlists or email. The chips can be programmed to do a wide variety of functions and can be written over again and again so there is actually a lot of potential with this idea. For me, it kind of blends the benefits of technology while still allowing you to keep a mechanical watch on your wrist. Keep in mind, though, that these chips are only compatible with Android for the time being.


As for the Parisian origin of these watches, Sartory-Billard have really gone a long way to make as much of this piece France-produced as they possibly can at the moment. The watch itself is 75% produced in France, specifically Franche Comté. The case, flange, and movement plate are all crafted in France, as well as the straps and hands. The brand is transparent in where each part is sourced with the crystal and movement being from Switzerland, the back crystal from Japan, and the crown from China. Like a lot of watch companies, it is their ultimate goal to have even more of the pieces manufactured locally given a little more time.

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I have seen a lot of smaller brands pop up in the last couple of years that try to be trendy and end up delivering cookie-cutter, minimalistic watches that don’t really add a lot of value for consumers. Because of this flood in the marketplace, I can tip my hat when a brand enters with a piece that doesn’t try to cash in on those trends and decides to think for themselves. It will be interesting to see where Sartory-Billard goes from here. The Sartory-Billard RPM 01 Classic and Sartory-Billard RPM 01 RS come with either the black leather strap or the “beef” variant and are priced at €2,900.

Necessary Data

>Brand: Sartory-Billard
>Model: RPM 01 Classic and RPM 01 RS
>Price: €2,900
>Size: 45mm
>Would reviewer personally wear it: Yes.
>Friend we’d recommend it to first: Lovers of unique design that have a penchant for racing-inspired pieces.
>Best characteristic of the watch: The styling and the design of the bezel really stand out here.
>Worst characteristic of the watch: It may wear a little large for some but that isn’t to say it is a massive piece.

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