, , ,

The Breitling Navitimer 👨‍✈️ Could this be a Pilot’s Best Friend?

Breitling Navitimer collection header
Best Watch Advice logo (black)
By the Best Watch Advice Team, 6th of October 2022

Most pilots agree that a durable and reliable aviation watch is essential when it comes to flight missions. One such high-end and prestigious Swiss watch that’s often recommended is the Breitling Navitimer. The brand has a long history of producing high-quality pilot timepieces jam-packed with avant-garde features.

In particular, the Breitling Navitimer is the brand’s flagship watch. They’re a series of top-tier pilot watches sought-after for its classic design, practical features, and precise timekeeping. The words “navigation” and “timer” were combined to create the name Navitimer. As a result, the name emphasizes the watch’s exceptional functionality, notably in the field of aviation.

So, without further ado, let us delve deeper into the incredible features of the Breitling Navitimer and why it deserves to be on your radar.

3 different watches from the collection

Up Close with the Navitimer Collection

Launched in 1952, the Breitling Navitimer is arguably one of the most classic and coveted watches in Breitling’s ever-growing catalog. To this day, the Navitimer has gone through more than 100 iterations, each with a unique, classic design, movement, case, or bracelet. 

Case and Crown of the Navitimer

The sturdy case of the Navitimer is presented in 18k red gold, 18k pure gold, steel, or a mix of steel and 18k gold. Each casing is treated with a sleek polished finish that makes it look beautiful from all angles. It is offered in between 38mm and 46mm case sizes, which highlights the fact that the pilot watches are a little chunkier than regular timekeepers.

Like the other Breitling watches, the Breitling Navitimer is equipped with a dual gasket, non-screw-locked crowns. It is placed on the right side of the watch’s case for any wearer to easily operate and maneuver it. The steel crown has a shiny finish that goes well with the watch’s overall stunning look.

A Navitimer watch

The Breitling Navitimer’s Caseback

The Breitling Navitimer is furnished with a transparent sapphire crystal caseback. It protects the powerful in-house movement that powers the watch inside. Not only that, but it also lets anyone who wears it see the beautiful mechanism in all its glory.

Meanwhile, some models of the Navitimer have a robust screw-in stainless steel caseback. While mainly protecting the mechanism inside, the caseback also displays some important details about the watch, such as its serial number, Breitling’s logo, the movement used, and so on.

The Eye-Catching Dial 

One of the most glamorous features of the Breitling Navitimer is definitely its eye-catching dial. The latest iterations of the Navitimer Automatic are designed in a lovely range of styles and colors, where you can choose from black, silver, gray, blue, etc. The hands and indices are coated with luminous material for greater legibility. Some of the models also have three useful sub-dials that can be used as 60-second, 30-minute, or 12-hour chronographs.

On the other hand, the Breitling Navitimer Chronograph models exhibit a captivating three-register Panda-style contrast dial. For instance, it depicts a pretty contrast between the white and black dial for the Navitimer BO3 Chronograph 45. And the white and green dial for the Navitimer BO1 Chronograph 41. In addition, the watch is also furnished with luminous hands and indices for easy reading time, even if it’s exposed in dimly lit places. The dial of the Navitimer Chronograph also comes with three utilitarian sub-dials that show the time to 60 seconds, 30 minutes, and 12 hours.

A man wearing a watch

The Breitling Navitimer’s Slide-Rule Bezel

The major selling point of the Breitling Navitimer is perhaps its slide-rule bezel attached on top of the case. It’s a great feature for pilots, or anyone wearing it, to be able to do quick mental math while on the go. With the help of the slide-rule bezel, they can divide, multiply, convert temperature, and perform cross-multiplication using the “rule of three.”

The Movements of the Navitimer

Over the years, Breitling has used various robust movements to power the Navitimer. The first Breitling Navitimer, which was released in 1952, was driven by a Venus caliber 178. It possesses a 45-hour power reserve and beats at 28,800 vph.

In the mid-1950s, the Breitling Navitimer was powered by a famous mechanism like the Valjoux 72 and the 7740. The former mechanism delivered a 42-hour power reserve, while the latter offered an impressive 45-hour power reserve. According to Breitling, these mechanisms deliver unrivaled accuracy and precision in timekeeping.

In the 1990s, Breitling decided to upgrade its movement used for the Navitimer with the unlocked Valjoux 7750. This automatic chronograph movement has a large power reserve of 48 hours and beats at a speed of 28,800 vph.

Starting in 2009, the brand ventured out to develop its own movement. Breitling presented its first-ever mechanism, which the brand labeled as the caliber BO1. Then, the Swiss brand released other first-class movements, such as the caliber BO2, caliber BO4 (GMT function), caliber BO5 (world time function), and caliber BO9. All of these superior movements were used to power the Breitling Navitimer.

In addition, these state-of-the-art mechanisms deliver a superior 70-hour power reserve and receive chronometer certification from COSC (Contrôle Officiel Suisse des Chronomètres).

Automatic and manual movements

Strap Variations

The Breitling Navitimer is available in a wide variety of strap options. Depending on the type of model, the Navitimer is offered in leather, croc-style, or nubuck straps. These straps ensure they offer optimum comfort on your wrist while at the same time allowing you to achieve a casual and classic look. It is also paired with a steel buckle clasp to securely fasten around your wrist.

Alternatively, for a more formal look, you can also opt for the stainless steel strap. It comes with a well-polished deployment buckle inscribed with a striking winged “B” emblem in the center.

What could you expect to pay for the Navitimer?

The Breitling Navitimer retails for around $3,500 for basic models and can go higher, up to $45,000 or more for its premium models.

Navitimer case

Final Thoughts on the Breitling Navitimer

The Breitling Navitimer, with its timeless design and cutting-edge technology, has consistently dominated the pilot watch industry. This series of high-caliber pilot watches offers superior functionality and reliability in timekeeping, making it a must-have watch tool for aviators and watch aficionados alike. 

If you’re searching for a sophisticated pilot’s watch equipped with excellent features, you should consider checking out the Navitimer.

Latest Posts You'll Definitely Enjoy...

0 replies

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *