Oris Big Crown ProPilot Calibre 114

I first met Ulrich Herzog, Chairman of Oris at an event co-hosted with Watches of Switzerland, in mid 2017.

I didn’t know much about Oris. I didn’t know much about Mr. Herzog. And in hindsight, I probably didn’t need all of those glasses of fizz. But I was having a good time, and the small, but perfectly formed team of Oris folk in attendance made me feel very welcome, and ensured that by the time I left, I had a hankering for something mechanical from Hölstein.

At some point in the evening, there were whispers of a potential Oris store in London. Maybe. If things worked out as planned.

Sitting opposite Ulrich, in Oris’ new pop-up store on South Molton street a year later, it’s safe to say that everything came together for this independent Swiss watchmaker's first London retail outlet.

Over ice water, we talk about what Time 4A Pint is (“Sort of like Redbar?”, ‘Well, not quite but sure there are some similarities’), about how I’m getting on with my Oris Diver Movember 65, about the popularity of the pop-up store, and about the watch on his wrist.

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Oris Big Crown ProPilot Calibre 114

The range topping Oris Big Crown ProPilot Calibre 114.

Released at Baselworld 2018, and making its way into stores now, this is the fifth modern release from Oris to feature an in-house movement. Sharing the same base and single barrel 10 day power reserve as the existing in-house calibres, along with the non-linear power reserve at 3, and sub-seconds at 9 - the calibre 114 adds a 24 hour GMT function (with 30 minute increments).

Available with either an anthracite or black dial, with Super LumiNova filled, applied arabic numerals, the Big Crown ProPilot is incredibly easy to read at a glance, although in bright light I think the matt-black version would be a more practical choice.

Along with the two dial options, you can choose between a variety of ways to attach it to your wrist, including a stainless steel bracelet, a Louisiana croco leather strap, and black, green, or olive coloured textile straps.

Ulrich was wearing his on leather, but left to play with all of the variants, I opted for the black dial with black textile strap - which I’m pleased to report is much easier to fit to your wrist than previous Oris deployants, thanks to a new stageless design (no holes, the deployant clamps the fabric exactly where you want it).

Being a range topper, the Big Crown ProPilot Calibre 114 isn’t as affordable as other watches in the Oris range, but at £3,850 (on textile strap/deployant) where else in the horological world do you get an in-house calibre with a 10 day power reserve?

Learn more at Oris Website.