Breitling’s Nostalgic Watches

The timepieces in Breitling’s new Super AVI collection pays tribute to the legendary P-51 Mustang, Vought F4U Corsair, Curtiss Warhawk and Mosquito planes.

In the beginning of the 19th century, the cockpits were not yet equipped with high technology as today and therefore cockpit clocks were one of the indispensable equipment of pilots. Beacuse these watches could be worn on wrist easily. Also, they made easy tracking the synchronization during flights. Throughout these years, Breitling was one of the brands that produced the world’s leading pilot’s watches. Even, the brand not only designed pilot’s watches, but also produced full-fledged watches could be installed in the dashboard. Furthermore, in the 1930s, the brand established the Huit Aviation Department, which produced precious timepieces in field of aeronautics. Two decades later, the department announced the Ref.765 AVI model, which quickly became known as “Co-Pilot”. Since then, the watch is one of the pioneering models of the brand.

Breitling’s CEO Georges Kern says that the collection embodies that sense of nostalgia for the early days of aviation when pilots relied on their watches as onboard tools. However, he also adds that you don’t have to be a pilot or vintage-aircraft buff to appreciate this exceptional craftsmanship. That is to say, these timepieces are true “Co-Pilot”.

The new Super AVI series consists of five models that pay tribute to the historic US planes P-51 Mustang, Vought F4U Corsair, Curtiss Warhawk and Mosquito. Each watch’s design and technical details represents a plane.

The watches’ bold case measures 46 mm, and large Arabic numerals on both dial and bezel highlights at the first glance in terms of design. The crown at 3 o’clock and knurled bezel are also key elements of design. Timepieces are driven by caliber B04 movement, which provides approximately 70 hours of power reserve.

The first model Super AVI P-51 Mustang comes with two different variations: a stainless-steel case with a black dial and gold-brown leather strap, and an 18k red gold version with an anthracite dial and a black leather strap.

Super AVI P-51 Mustang

The Super AVI Tribute to Vought F4U Corsair features a blue dial, tone-on-tone chronograph counters, and a black leather strap that take their design cues from the naval aircraft.

Super AVI Tribute to Vought F4U Corsair

As you guess, Super AVI Curtiss Warhawk with military-green dial takes its name from the Curtis Warhawk. The red accents on the dial are reminiscent of famous shark-mouth nose art that gave the plane its name.

Super AVI Curtiss Warhawk

The Super AVI Mosquito comes with a black dial with a polished and brushed black ceramic bezel with white contrast chronograph counters. Its red and orange details are inspired by the roundels and markings found on the Mosquito.

Super AVI Mosquito

As I wrote these nostalgic pilot’s watches with their 46 mm diameter case, this question arose in my mind: despite thin cases has increased in recent years and even pilot’s watches have become thinner, could bold watches replace with thin cases? Or, it could be a nostalgic breeze.