Christopher Ward’s C70 DBR1 COSC builds on one of the most successful watches ever made by the luxury British watchmaker. The original C70 DBR1 was created to celebrate Aston Martin’s famous victory at Le Mans in 1959 and the new watch shares the design details of the winning car’s livery while taking accurate timekeeping to the very highest level.
A mechanical watch which is 99.9% accurate can still lose or gain a minute and a half in only 24 hours – more than the gap which determined first and second place in many a Le Mans race. The C70 DBR1 COSC is accurate to within one second a month and has been certified by the Contrôle Officiel Suisse des Chronomètres (the institute that measures the accuracy and precision of watches in Switzerland) – an honour bestowed on only 3% of Swiss watches.
The C70 DBR1 COSC has only been made in an extremely limited edition of 200 pieces worldwide. Each model features an upgraded ETA 251.232 quartz movement which has an additional 4th chronograph hand that measures minutes allowing the chronograph eyes to measure hours, minutes and tenths of seconds. The COSC certification which accompanies this C70 testifies that the watch is one of the most accurate watches in the world.
Christopher Ward has used no less than five stepping motors to ensure the watch’s accuracy. The tiny motors which convert electrical energy are normally used to control lasers or welding robots. When used in timepieces, stepping motors provide extremely accurate movements of the gearing and hands, and the more that are used the more accurate the watch will be.
In 1959, the two co-drivers of the winning Aston Martin, Roy Salvadori (British) and Caroll Shelby (American), completed 323 laps (about 2,700 miles) in the 24-hour race – finishing just ahead of a second Aston Martin DBR1, and some distance ahead of four Ferraris 250 GTs an AC Ace and a Lotus Elite. Of the other 45 entries only 13 cars finished the race. Although Aston Martin has never managed to win Le Mans again, the marque renewed its quest for a second victory in 2009.
The striking design of the C70 DBR1 COSC reflects many of the details of the winning car. The British Racing Green bezel mirrors the colour of the car and the dark charcoal trim of the winning Aston Martin provides the background colour for the face and three dials. Even the watch’s hands pick up on the DBR1’s white needles on the speedometer and fuel gauge and its red rev counter. The large numbers on the dial reflect the giant numbers in white circles that were on the side of every 1959 Le Mans car.
The highly collectible watch will launch in October 2011 at a price of just £575 replacing the original C70 DBR1 which sold out in record time.