By Jovan Krstevski
To celebrate the 10th anniversary of the Patravi TravelTec line, Carl F. Bucherer introduced the newest TravelTec II at Baselworld 2015, featuring a three-time zone display and a chronograph. I’m also quite intrigued by the TravelTec II’s reinvented compact case filled with complicated functions. Mind you, I like such functions but it seems that having them littered on the dial without the choice to hide them sometimes gets on my nerves that’s why I’d probably rethink my stand on using “smart watches,” they look dumb in the sense of mechanical prowess but they present personalizations like no other so Bucherer thank you for making the new addition to your Patravi TravelTec line a little bit smarter.
Ten years weren’t wasted by this company, and I’m really glad to say that I’m really impressed by this new watch. I like its simplicity even if it’s designed for high class complications, yes those smooth metallic finishes and smooth curves are highly valued in the horology world. So let’s see what with the case. Well, for one it’s compact but don’t think it’s smaller because the case is actually 47.7 mm in diameter about a millimeter bigger than the original and it’s thicker too at 15.9 mm against 15.5 mm. The compact here rests on the design, packing in more features by utilizing every nook and cranny the designers can find. That’s why the bezel also doubles as the third timezone indicator (usually they’re clean), well this one has etched numbers on it. The second timezone is an inner ring like a sloping dome which is rather neat opening up the main dial for that extra space feel. The lugs are also great and in unison with the overall design of the pushers and the crown.
The dial’s dark color makes everything stand out and I like the placements of the chronographs found at the 3, 6 and 9 o’clock. The date is halfway between 4 and 5 o’clock with a curved lens. The branding is the same and not very intruding after all, you’d really want to flaunt this valuable watch. The indices and hands are of the same design from the original Traveltec — the usual clean and no-nonsense lines and the red indicator for the East and West directions. By the way, the monopusher at the 10 o’clock controls the time-zone settings featuring a push-button for changing the hour indications depending on where the traveler is going.
What powers the Traveltec II is the in-house automatic Caliber 1901.1, a modified version of the ETA 2894 chronograph movement powering the original TravelTec. It’s highly reliable and certified as a chronometer by the COSC. Displaying three time zones is normally taxing but the movement is rather capable of providing up to 42 hours of power reserve which is great.
The movement can be glimpsed from the tiny opening on the side of the case just below the monopusher at the 10 o’clock since the back case features the time differences from the 24 major time zones.
Of course, you’ll be wearing this baby with an equally appealing special rubber watchband with stitched leather inserts. Honestly, why not do the whole leather strap but I guess the designers want to showcase the combination of exquisite materials instead. At $12,000 a piece, I’d rethink buying one at least for now. For more info, please visit carl-f-bucherer.com
Jovan Krstevski – Founder, Proprietor & Executive Editor
Watch collector, aficionado and an Event profile in the Swedish nightlife. He launched Watchgeek back in 2011, which is now known as WristReview and is one of the most widely read watch blogs on the Web. He quotes ’WristReview is a site to help people find, explore, discover and enjoy wristwatches.’ His passion for horology jump started in his early teens, when he was given his first mid-range wristwatch which was an Omega Seamaster. Since then he has always been in love with wristwatches! Besides WristReview, he also writes for a number of publications. P.S. He is also a huge fan of The Man of Steel/Superman. Read his articles here.