It’s a year of special editions for Breitling. Since its acquisition by CVC Capital Partners and the appointment of CEO Georges Kern who used to head up IWC, the brand is on a roll. If you remember, one of Kern’s first moves at Breitling was to introduce the Navitimer 8. Find out more about the Breitling Navitimer 8 here.
Navitimer Ref. 806 1959 Re-Edition
Leading the headlines this year is the Navitimer Ref. 806 1959 Re-Edition, which pays homage to one specific variation of this aviation icon, the Ref. 806. Breitling enthusiasts will certainly be pleased by the all black tone on tone sub dials as well as the vintage brand logo.
The manufacture really geeked out on this watch. Firstly, its bezel has precisely 94 beads which is exactly the number found on the historical model. This is a significant feature because between the early 1950s and the 60s, Breitling has made several variations of the Navitimer Ref. 806, some with as many as 125 beads and some as few as 93. Go ahead, count them.
Secondly, its stainless steel case measures precisely 40.9 millimetres—exactly the same dimensions as the original watch—and finished with the same touches.
Navitimer Ref. 809 1959 Re-Edition however presents a new manually wound calibre developed specially for this watch. Manufacture Calibre B09 is intended for all future hand-wound historical re-editions.
Premier Bentley Centenary
Theirs is the longest standing partnership ever between a watch brand and an automobile manufacture. This year, Breitling and Bentley jointly launched the Premier Bentley Centenary Limited Edition a few days ahead of Baselworld at the Geneva International Motor Show. It comes with a unique brown elm burl dial with black sub dials and an open case back showing off a Bentley logo.
One particularly sexy feature is a metal plate screwed onto the case middle. Decorated with perlage finishing and engraved with a Bentley inscription, it’s an elegant reminder of the dashboard of the historical supercharged 1929 “Blower” Bentley. This COSC-certified chronograph comes with a luxurious brown leather strap stitched with the same quilted pattern as the seats of a classical Bentley.
Premier Norton Edition
It may be designed for the motorcycle enthusiast, specifically the Norton motorcycle enthusiast, but this vintage-inspired model suits anyone with two wrists and one beating heart. This 42mm stainless steel watch has a classic Norton logo engraved on a metal plate that’s screwed onto its middle case. Its transparent case back also has the Norton logo and an image of a Norton motorcycle imprinted.
A black dial with golden stencilled numerals and hands intensify the vintage appeal, while a raw leather strap gives it that bad-boy touch. The sub dials are in silver, just like the tachymeter scale, and they’ve done an amazing job at pulling the entire look together.