IWC Schaffhausen has revealed its latest range of pilot’s watches ahead of SIHH 2019, which takes place in Geneva from the 14th to 17th January. The Swiss watchmaker has partnered with Goodwood Aviation as the main sponsor of “Silver Spitfire – the Longest Flight” project. That is the first round-the-world flight in a Spitfire fighter plane. So naturally, the first of the new watches celebrates this challenge.
The pilot’s watch Timezoner Spitfire Edition “The Longest Flight” has been specially developed for pilots Steve Boultbee Brooks and Matt Jones to coincide with their flight around the world. The colour scheme, stainless steel case, black dial and green textile strap are reminiscent of a Spitfire’s cockpit.
The watch can be set to a different time zone by simply rotating the bezel. The hour hand, the 24-hour display and the date rotate automatically at the same time. The 24-hour display has been designed as a rotating disc beneath the dial. This means that the dial moves closer to the front glass, making it easier to read. With components made from water-resistant ceramic and a power reserve of 60 hours, The Longest Flight is limited to just 250 watches.
The backbone of the new Spitfire line is the Chronograph Spitfire watch. It is IWC’s first Pilot’s Chronograph with a movement from the 69000 calibre family and a reduced case diameter of just 41 millimetres. The watch is described as robust, reliable and high-precision with a classic column wheel design. The stopped hours and minutes are displayed on the two subdials at “9 o’clock” and “12 o’clock”.
The watch also features a date and day display. The pawl-winding system, which winds up on both sides, boasts a power reserve of 46 hours. The bronze case, olive green dial and brown calf leather strap give this watch unique character. Over time, the bronze develops a distinctive patina, making every watch unique.
The Double Chronograph Top Gun Ceratanium is IWC’s first ever pilot’s watch to be completely jet black. It makes use of a new material developed by IWC called Ceratanium. It’s said to be just as unbreakable as titanium and as hard and scratch-resistant as ceramic. Lightweight too.
The Double Chronograph has an integrated split-seconds hand mechanism for simultaneously measuring short periods of time. It is powered by the 79230 calibre, is self-winding and boasts a power reserve of 44 hours. The watch, with its black dial and black hands, sits on a rubber strap and textile inlay.
The Big Pilot’s Watch Constant-Force Tourbillon Edition “Le Petit Prince” has a long name. It’s also the first pilot’s watch from IWC to feature a constant- force tourbillon. Meaning the watch movement eliminates the influence of gravity on the oscillating system, resulting in extraordinary precision.
Le Petit Prince is also the first time IWC has produced a watch with hard gold, a special new version of red gold. Hard gold is said to be significantly harder and around 5 to 10 times more wear-resistant than conventional red gold. With a perpetual moon phase display which takes 577.5 years to require adjustment by one day and a 96-hour power reserve, Le Petit Prince is limited to just 10 watches.