Our team tested the Baume & Mercier Clifton, an updated version of a vintage Baume & Mercier men’s watch from the 1950s, which was introduced just last year. Here are the results.
Baume & Mercier’s Clifton collection, introduced last year, is meant to evoke the simple, classically styled watches of the 1950s. It was inspired by a particular Baume & Mercier model from that decade, and shares with that watch its fluid case contours, flat crown and softly rounded Arabic numerals. The Clifton collection contains an automatic version with small seconds, a GMT model, a moon-phase model with full calendar, and a manual-wind watch with an ultra-thin movement from La Joux-Perret. We tested the basic Clifton, the small seconds version. A variety of curves and finishes on the case adds visual interest to the watch. The sapphire crystal, which is domed, flows gently into the angled bezel, which has a narrow vertical edge at the transition to the case midsection.
The midsection itself consists of two levels that are visible from any angle. From the side, one sees a satin-finished edge with a polished chamfer. Viewed from above, the shiny strip contrasts nicely with the matte bezel and brushed finish on the top of the lugs. There is another polished section between the lugs. The dial is silver colored. The polished caseback, which is placed at a slight angle to the sapphire window in its center, is beveled around its circumference. This detail creates an attractive visual effect and allows the watch to lie close to the wrist. The watch is very comfortable to wear due in no small part to the smooth and supple alligator strap. Simply flipping open the shaped outer bar allows the prong to fit into the correct perforation. Pressing the bar down results in an audible click and ensures the strap is set securely in place. Download the full review here.
This article was originally posted on March 19, 2014, and has been updated.