The Breitling x Deus Ex Machina Top Time is a Limited Edition Chronograph Fit for an Australian (and any other) Summer

When it comes to surfing, I can’t think of a watch brand that has a stronger hold and understanding of the sport more than Breitling. Just take a look at who they have wearing their watches out in the line up. Kelly Slater is arguably the greatest competitive surfer of all time, holding every major record in the sport, 11 World Titles, and being the youngest and oldest World Champion in Men’s history. During Slater’s partnership with Breitling, they’ve used the Superocean diver as a platform to bring Slater’s design ideas and passion about environmental conservation to life. Another surfer who is currently partnered up with Breitling is none other than adventurer and outdoor photographer Chris Burkard, who earlier this year completed an expedition in which he traversed 300 miles of Iceland’s southern coastline with a Breitling attached to the handlebars of his Fezzari Kings Peak.

But surfing is more than just a sport. There’s an art and culture that’s very much a part of the history as the competitive part of it. And Breitling has gotten a hold of that too. Adjacent to Breitling’s partnerships with Slater and Burkard, they’ve tapped into the surfing lifestyle and culture through Australian apparel brand Deus Ex Machina. Surfing is very much ingrained into the brand’s ethos, especially since their coastlines are home to some of the first-class waves around the world, but Deus Ex Machina’s soul is fueled by custom motorcycles and the creativity that goes into it all. The recent collaboration between Breitling and Deus Ex Machina puts all of that on display with their second iteration of the Top Time Deus Chronograph.


The Top Time is Breitling’s chronograph that is both stylish and vintage in aesthetic. For the second time around, the Top Time Deus Chronograph uses a brighter and more vibrant color accent that is reminiscent of warm weather and tropical locales. The internal tachymeter scale bordering the dial is flushed with a sky-blue tone, which is only brightened by the off-white center. More flashes of color happen within the dial with the use of red and orange segments in the tachymeter scale. Cleverly filling in the negative space of the scale is the Latin phrase “In Benzin Veritas” which appropriately translates to “In Fuel, There Is Truth”.

The subdials mirror the tachymeter scale in color. The rounded corners of the subdials add more of a contemporary feel, balancing out the vintage vibes and the signature lighting bolt acting as the chronograph seconds hand adds the Deus Ex Machina flare. The Breitling and Deus wordmarking maintain the symmetry of the dial and light beige hour markers with thin black surrounds make it so that the dial just meets the criteria for what is a legible dial.

The Top Time Deus Chronograph sports a fully polished stainless steel case. Piston-like pushers frame the push-pull crown. Although the Top Time Deus Chronograph presents with a vintage styling, its case proportions make for a larger wearing watch. The case measures 41mm in width, 14.2 in thickness and a lengthy 51.5mm lug to lug. On the underside of the case, the Top Time Deus Chronograph displays a sketch-like engraving of a motorcyclist crouched into a speeding cruiser, and a handwritten inscription that recognizes the collaboration between the two brands. Powering the Top Time Deus Chronograph is the Breitling Caliber 23 equipped with 48 hours of power reserve, a COSC certification and a finely tuned movement that hums at 28,800 vph.

The Top Time Deus Chronograph most certainly has a summer feel to it. The white dial and bright colored accents mixed in with the polished steel case would look the business with a plain white t-shirt on and palm trees in the background. Now I know we’re getting winter weather here in the Northern Hemisphere, but in the Down-Under where Deus Ex Machina is based out of, they’re just getting their summer underway, which makes the whole look of the watch totally appropriate for the time of year. The Top Time Deus Chronograph might not be the first watch you grab for going on expeditions, or when the swell is looking right and a surf session is in the cards. But it’s definitely the watch you grab when the weather warms up and you have the need to go fast on something that has a motor and two wheels.

The Breitling Top Time Deus Chronograph is limited to 2,000 pieces and retails for $5,500. Breitling x Deus Ex Machina

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Thomas is a budding writer and an avid photographer by way of San Diego, California. From his local surf break to mountain peaks and occasionally traveling to destinations off the beaten path, he is always searching for his next adventure, with a watch on wrist, and a camera in hand. Thomas is a watch enthusiast through and through; having a strong passion for their breadth of design, historical connection, and the stories that lie within each timepiece.