Angus Davies gets ‘hands-on’ with the Ball for BMW TIMETREKKER and contemplates whether this could be ‘the ultimate driving watch’.

This detailed review of the Ball for BMW TIMETREKKER includes live images, specification details and pricing.

Ball_for_BMW_Timetrekker_wrist - ESCAPEMENT MAGAZINE - watch blog by Angus Davies

Today, BMW offers an alluring array of front-wheel drive, rear-wheel drive and four-wheel drive vehicles. However, many years ago, the German car marque came to prominence with several groundbreaking models blessed with prodigious handling, thanks, in no small part, to a magical rear-wheel drive set-up.

By pairing said handling prowess with silky smooth straight six-cylinder engines, the Bavarian car company gained an enviable reputation for imparting peerless driver enjoyment. This trait has never waned with the passage of time.

Some years ago, the brand’s marketing team cleverly conceived the slogan ‘The Ultimate Driving Machine’, four words which have become synonymous with BMW ownership and a message which continues to be employed today.

Ball_for_BMW_Timetrekker_dial2 - ESCAPEMENT MAGAZINE - watch blog by Angus Davies

BMW and Ball Watch, the Swiss watchmaking company, have collaborated together to create a handsome collection of timepieces. The dual branded watches blend Swiss horology with motoring inspired aesthetics, according a heady mixture few gentlemen could resist.

I recently got ‘hands-on’ with the Ball for BMW TIMETREKKER, appraised its octane-inspired form and pondered whether this could be ‘The Ultimate Driving Watch’.

The dial

The dial of the TIMETREKKER eschews numerous shades, adopting a monochrome palette of black and white, reminding me of the lucid dialogue found with BMW dashboard instruments. The black and white tones are obvious bedfellows which augment ease of understanding.

Ball_for_BMW_Timetrekker_dial - ESCAPEMENT MAGAZINE - watch blog by Angus Davies

The silver toned hands are adorned with Ball’s legendary micro-gas tubes, conferring matchless legibility even in restricted light. The hours are marked with batons, save for 5, 6 and 7 o’clock. The batons are also equipped with micro-gas tubes which evince a blue hue in darkness.

A central sweep seconds hand liaises with a series of neat, white strokes gracing the chapter ring, facilitating ease of read-off.

The dial surface is populated with a lattice of small recessed dots. This design element is probably the most flamboyant element of the dial composition, however, rest assured, it does not mar the legibility of the dial or corrupt the seemly tone of the dial vista. On the contrary, this aspect of the design language grants a high quotient of tasteful eye appeal.

Positioned adjacent 3 o’clock, the day and date are presented via two apertures. Both indications employ crisp black text against white discs to proclaim information with impressive eloquence.

The case

Measuring 44mm in diameter with a case thickness of 13.45mm, the highly polished stainless steel case exudes an air of masculinity.

Ball_for_BMW_Timetrekker_crown - ESCAPEMENT MAGAZINE - watch blog by Angus Davies

The unidirectional rotating bezel includes a ceramic insert. The white on black markings stand out wonderfully, again facilitating rapid wearer interpretation. Framing the ceramic insert of the bezel, the gleaming stainless steel has a crenellated profile, enhancing the ease of manipulation. Indeed, rotating the bezel bestows a delightful tactile encounter, reaffirming the perception of quality.

Ball_for_BMW_Timetrekker_caseback - ESCAPEMENT MAGAZINE - watch blog by Angus Davies

Petrolheads will no doubt appreciate the facility to see the ‘engine’ powering this motoring-inspired timepiece via an exhibition caseback. However, this is not the usual dorsal window found on an increasing number of watches, but a sapphire crystal adorned with the BMW logo.

The movement

The Caliber Ball RR1102-C is a self-winding movement containing 25 or 26 jewels ‘depending on the execution’, alluding to the fact that this movement features in several of the watch company’s models.

Ball_for_BMW_Timetrekker_movement - ESCAPEMENT MAGAZINE - watch blog by Angus Davies

The balance has a frequency of 28,800 vph (4Hz). The TIMETREKKER is a certified chronometer (COSC), denoting a high degree of precision.

Where the movement excels is in its robustness. The Caliber Ball RR1102-C is equipped with the brand’s patented Amortiser® anti-shock system, sheltering the oscillating mass from potentially harmful, excessive forces. The movement is antimagnetic to 4,800 A/M and the TIMETREKKER is water resistant to 200 metres, making it suitable for wearers who enjoy an active lifestyle.

When I appraised the finishing of the movement, I found it to be a tad industrial but nevertheless typical of watches at this price point. Moreover, it should not dissuade prospective purchasers from considering acquisition.

Closing remarks

Over a number of years, I have owned several BMWs. The entertaining handling, smooth ride and sweet-sounding engines make a compelling argument for acquisition.

The Ball for BMW TIMETREKKER is a devilishly handsome timepiece, blessed with engaging chiselled features. The bi-colour display proves eminently simple to read, day or night, and will resonate with drivers of BMW cars who have grown accustomed to stylish, yet legible, dashboard instruments.

Ball_for_BMW_Timetrekker_bracelet - ESCAPEMENT MAGAZINE - watch blog by Angus Davies

By allowing my curious fingers to explore each portion of the TIMETREKKER’s case, I was able to determine the execution of the case and bracelet were of a very high standard and certainly exceeded my expectations based on the modest asking price of £2390 (as at 1.8.2016).

The movement is imbued with an impressive sturdiness which should see it provide reliable service for many years.

Returning to my original question, is the Ball for BMW TIMETREKKER ‘the Ultimate Driving Watch’? In all honesty, probably not, some haute horlogerie creations offer a far superior level of movement finishing. However, these ultra high-end timepieces can easily exceed the aggregate cost of a 3 series, 5 series and 7 series, with their six-figure pricing.

Where the TIMETREKKER shines is by offering an abundance of qualities for comparatively little. It is for this reason it deserves success. Moreover, when many wives are struggling to think of a birthday present or Christmas gift for their ‘better half’, they may well wish to consider a BALL for BMW TIMETREKKER, a fitting accompaniment for the Ultimate Driving Machine.

Technical Specification

  • Reference: DM3010B-SCJ-BK
  • Case: Stainless steel; diameter 44mm; height 13.45mm; water resistant to 20 bar (200 metres); Sapphire crystal to front and caseback.
  • Functions: Hours; minutes; central sweep seconds; day; date.
  • Movement: Calibre RR1102-C, self-winding movement; frequency 28,800 vph (4Hz); power reserve 38 hours.
  • Bracelet: Stainless steel bracelet with folding clasp
  • Price: £2,390 (RRP as at 1.8.2016)

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