I've finally gotten a chance to spend some time with what I believe is now the most affordable Swiss Made tourbillon watch on the market. Thomas Baillod’s BA111OD Watches introduced a tourbillon-based timepiece as the basis of its “Chapter 4” collection in 2021. Like the brand’s other watches, the goal was to challenge the traditional value proposition of an actually Swiss Made tourbillon by offering a price point unmatched by others. While there are even cheaper prices available with Chinese-made tourbillons, The BA111OD Chapter 4 Tourbillon series is a wonderful achievement, a fun watch, and a great story to tell on your wrist. With a price under 5,000 Swiss Francs, let’s look deeper into the BA111OD Chapter 4.1 T.V.D timepiece.
Most of the pizazz in the watch comes in the form of the skeletonized caliber BA.01 manually wound tourbillon movement. According to BA111OD, the movement was developed in collaboration with watchmaker Olivier Mory, who was tasked with making both a beautiful and functional tourbillon that could satisfy requirements to be branded as “Swiss Made.” The watch very much exceeds the requirements, but the claim that the watch was Swiss Made and priced at this level did cause some stir in Switzerland. Thomas Baillod told me a story of how some “complaints” to a local Swiss newspaper led to a reporter reaching out and trying to investigate the claim about where the watch was made. The reporter did, indeed, carry out an investigation and drafted a subsequent article. The result was not only a validation of the BA111OD brand claims of the mechanical movement being produced in the Swiss Jura and according to Swiss Made standards, but also a healthy boost in sales. In fact, many of today’s current BA111OD brand customers are from in and around Switzerland’s watchmaking community. That’s a pretty serious endorsement of the new brand, even if the founder has watchmakers in his family going back generations.
Attached to the Chapter 4.1 T.V.D watch case is an Italian leather strap in blue with a canvas-style texture. The strap is fitted to a foldover deployant clasp. The overall style isn’t exactly sporty, but is certainly a hip watch to go with business-casual and other slightly formal attire. You might call this look “Swiss casual.” Even though the Chapter 4 Tourbillon watches are a major story for the BA111OD brand, they don’t represent the totality of what the company is good at. Nevertheless, it is an impressive title to be crowned as the most affordable Swiss Made tourbillon watch on the market. It doesn’t necessarily replace the grace, decoration, and thinness of some of the much more expensive tourbillons on the market, but the BA111OD Chapter 4.1 Tourbillon offers a rewarding experience in a real Swiss Made package. Price is $5,580 USD.
Original language: English