I’ve always been an admirer of Bremont, with their British base and heritage, gentlemanly design, and high levels of craftsmanship. But, they’ve always eluded me. Until now. As soon as they reached out, I was more than happy to check out anything they sent my way – they’d decided to send the S302, a 40mm vintage-inspired professional dive watch. I took one look and knew I’d have a good time checking it out.
Bremont assembles its timepieces in the new Bremont Manufacturing & Technology Centre, aka ‘The Wing’. According to their site, this enables the full machining and manufacturing of Bremont’s watches. Pretty impressive stuff, that they make so much of a watch on British soil, to such a high spec, but keep the prices similar to other luxury watches.
So, is it worth £3295? Or are you better off going Swiss for a similar price, such as Oris? Let’s check it out.
The video review
- Dimensions: 40mm diameter x 13mm height x 49mm lug to lug
- Weight: 92g
- Water resistance rating: 30ATM / 300m
- Movement: BE-93-2AV (modified ETA 2892-A2)
- Accuracy: +10.9 sec / day
- Lug width: 20mm
- Warranty: 3 years
- Price: £3295
- Click here to view on Bremont.com and to buy
I feel it makes sense to give special consideration to the aspects that make the watch stand out.
The S302 features a stainless steel Trip-Tick® case construction with a scratch-resistant DLC treated barrel. Bremont uses their case hardening process named B-EBE2000 (which doesn’t roll off the tongue), where the metal is heat-treated and defused with carbon, then bombarded with electrons. The result? Metal with a hardness rating of 2000Hv – seven times harder than standard steel, and therefore, more scratch-resistant.
And what’s “Trip-Tick” all about? The naming convention seems a bit unusual (as in, it doesn’t mean much to me), but the cases are constructed in three parts: the top of the case bezel, the middle barrel and the case back. Whilst it doesn’t mean you get any technological advantages, it does give Bremont watches a distinctive engineered look and feel, and allows them to use a variety of colours and materials for the central barrel, this one being DLC (diamond-like carbon) treated.
Something that many would deem insignificant, but has deeply impressed me is the crown. This thing is a delight. It has great grip and smooth action, is beautifully crafted, with an alluring orange ring with a painted tip with the logo.
The domed scratch-resistant sapphire crystal has 9 layers of anti-reflective coating on the top and bottom, making it ultra hard-wearing. Top AR coating can scratch off and can be as horrible to look at as a ding on the case, but Bremont hopes to stop that from happening with their multiple layering approach.
The movement within the Bremont S302 is the BE-93-2AV, which is a modified ETA 2892-A2. It’s chronometer (COSC) certified, with 25 Jewels, a beat rate of 28.8k bph (8 ticks per second), and a 38-hour power reserve. What’s been modified? It has a Glucydur balance, Anachron balance spring, and Nivaflex 1 mainspring. These upgrades make the movement more robust, accurate, and more anti-magnetic. It’s also completely disassembled and modified in “The Wing”. Their custom rotors are delightful, so I’m pretty gutted that this watch has a solid caseback rather than an exhibition one and therefore we can’t see it. The +10.9 sec/day accuracy is disappointing as it’s COSC, but I’m going to put that down to it being a press loaner.
“P-51” vintage coloured Super-LumiNova has been used throughout, with decent strength and longevity.
Thus we move on to the vintage aesthetics. The discoloured / sandy complexion has a definite antique feel to it, which is proving to be very popular at the moment. The hour markers, hands, and bezel markings all work well together, alongside the coloured printwork of the logo, minute track, and 24-hour markings on the rehaut. It’s all very well colour coordinated.
The shape of the nickel satin hands also compliments the vintage feel; a modern take of a cathedral / sword crossover handset. The burnt orange GMT hand offers a bold foray away from this palette, offering ultimate legibility which isn’t overpowering. What’s more, the date window at 3 has a very subtle indented border to it, providing a clean transition between the dial and the colour-matched date wheel.
The uni-directional laser engraved ceramic bezel has a cool matte finish to it, and I particularly like the pip and triangle combo at 12. The markings are all super accurate, although excuse the scuff on this press loaner.
The S302 is loaded on a “Sahara Vintage” leather strap – which is very high quality but takes a little while to break in as it’s reassuringly thick. The creamy colour compliments the colouring of the dial well indeed.
What’s great about luxury watches is every part tends to be well thought out – and the buckle is no exception. It’s certainly not a regular tang buckle, with beautiful sweeping lines, alternating finishes and chamfered edges. The Bremont logo is tastefully and elegantly engraved and painted on the top bar.
The caseback features a detailed embossing of a Supermarine Seaplane, the link between Bremont’s aviation heritage and this being a professional dive watch. Again, good detailing and attention to detail here, as expected.
At just over £3000, the Bremont S302 is firmly within luxury watch territory. And it’s easy to see why – the whole thing has tremendous refinement, through and through. Every aspect of the watch has been made the best it can be.
The Trip-Tick case is a delight, and the hardening means it’ll be ultra hard-wearing. So too, the 9 layers of anti-reflective coating on the crystal. The crown in itself is a work of art; the overall design is sophisticated and perceptive. The leather strap is thick and high-quality, and whilst the COSC movement isn’t fully in-house, it’s modified to a high degree. All of that, as well as being British-constructed? Little wonder why it’s the price it is. When compared to another brand, such as Christopher Ward and their brand new C63 Sealander, which in itself is a fantastic watch, the difference in quality is noticeable.
I always like to include any negative points on my watch reviews. I must admit, it’s difficult with the S302. Perhaps it could be slimmer? Some might grumble about the price? There’s no denying though that this is a lovely watch, and I’m convinced that owners will be very pleased with their purchase.