The Navitimer, Breitling’s most emblematic timepiece, is a pilot’s watch, first launched in 1952. It is the only chronograph that has been in non-stop production ever since. Breitling’s connection to aviation goes back even further to 1938, when Willy Breitling set up the Huit Aviation Department that focused on creating pilot’s watches and timing instruments which could be used in the cockpit.
With the onset of World War II, Breitling was commissioned to fit military planes like the British Spitfire planes with cockpit clocks. By the Fifties and Sixties, several commercial airlines including KLM, United Airlines, Lockheed and Convair also began using Breitling clocks in their aircraft.
When the Navitimer made its debut, it was developed in association with the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA). In fact, in those early years of its production, the only way you could get yourself a Navitimer was if you were an actual pilot. The slide rule function on the watch can be used to calculate vital functions like ground speed, fuel consumptions, and carry out division, multiplication and algorithms too. At the Summit, we went hands-on with the Navitimer 1 B03 Rattrapante 45 Boutique Edition equipped with the brand’s first in-house split-seconds chronograph movement and now features a ‘Stratos Grey’ dial. We also got a sneak peek of the upcoming Navitimer 8 B01 Curtiss Warhawk special edition which is named after the shark-nosed Curtiss P-40 Warhawk plane that was the third most manufactured warplane during WWII.
Navitimer 1 B03 Rattrapante 45 Boutique Edition