Breil VD54 Chronograph Review
I first became aware of the Breil brand a few years ago when my sister-in-law returned from a trip to Europe with one. I was sufficiently impressed with the overall build quality of hers to put Breil on my "one of these days list." The example you see above is their VD54 Chronograph. I was initially drawn to it for its unusual sort of Bell and Ross looks and the solid looking bracelet design. I also like the fact that it doesn't have a date function as my phone gives me that information these days and I'm not thrilled about having to regularly reset the date on my watch anymore. Since Breil is not all that common in the US I think that a little background is in order.
When I first saw my sister-in-law's Breil, I assumed that this was more of a fashion piece than the product of a serious watch company. I was very wrong about that as it turns out. Breil is an Italian watch company that has been around since 1939. They have been producing a variety of men's and women's models that run the gamut from dress watches to automatics to quartz chronographs to sports models. Additionally, they have since added a jewelry line to compliment their timepiece offerings.
Visually, this Breil chrono is a very attractive watch to my eye. The blend of angles and curves is an unusual look but Breil made it work well. The watch case is stainless steel with a screw down caseback and an all solid link stainless steel bracelet that has good heft to it. The crown and clasp are signed and the clasp feels solid and sturdy. The hands and hour indicators on the watch face (including the big 12) are lumed with what appears to be superluminova and low light visibility seems pretty good. The back of the watch case is angled to fit the curvature of the wrist resulting in a very comfortable wearing watch. Size-wise, the watch is 42mm in width (44 with the crown), 12mm in height, 50mm lug to lug and the bracelet is 28mm at the case. The crystal appears to be conventional mineral glass. Lastly, the water resistance is rated at 10atm which should be fine for most folks.
Internally, this model is powered by a Miyota JS00 quartz chronograph movement. Like pretty much all Miyota (Citizen) movements, it should prove to be a solid, trouble free, performer. The three face chrono subdials are minutes at 9, seconds at 6 and a 24 hour counter at 3. The central seconds hand functions like that of a non-chrono, i.e. running at all times.
I'm a pretty happy camper with this watch. It seems both well made and I really like the look. Breil now has a US distributor which should help increase their visibility a bit here. Prices seem reasonable for what you get as well. If you are in the market for a stylish watch that isn't run of the mill, give Breil a good look.