One To Watch | Breitling Navitimer 8

One To Watch | Breitling Navitimer 8

A brand steeped in over 130 years of horological history, Breitling is one of the biggest names in Swiss Made watches and an official supplier to the world of aviation. The inventors of the modern chronograph, they have the enviable accolade of being the only brand to equip all its major models with chronometer certified movements.

But, nearly a year since the arrival of Breitling’s new CEO, Georges Kern, and it is as though Breitling’s history is being re-written once again.

Invigorated with a new energy, as well as making the most of their trail-blazing heritage, the new collections are more contemporary, have a cleaner design, and are ready to give your watch wardrobe a whole new lease of life.

Enter the new Navitimer 8 collection.

The Huit Aviation Department

Only partly inspired by the iconic 1952 Navitimer collection, the new Navitimer 8 is distinguished from the original by the lack of the famous aviation slide rule - resulting in a dial which is much cleaner and far more elegant.

To find its true inspiration, we need to delve deep into the brand’s history; back to 1938 when Breitling’s in-house Huit Aviation Department’s sole purpose was to design cockpit instruments for aircraft. Translated from the French; ‘Huit’ means ‘8’, and was originally a reference to the 8-day power reserve of their aircraft chronographs.

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A Homage To Early Breitling Pilot Watches

Taking design cues from early Breitling models, the retro dials and notched bezels in particular is where you can see the historical influence at work. The new collection also borrows the ‘railtrack’ minute markers, elegant numerals and paired-back legibility of Breitling model No. 768; a pivotal timepiece from the 1940’s.

Not only honouring their illustrious heritage, but also their role in producing chronographic instruments during WWII, the new Navitimer 8 collection is a masterclass in clean, retro styling. And, since Kern’s arrival at Breitling HQ spells the end for the brand’s quartz production, all of the new models are equipped with chronometer certified mechanical movements.

The Navitimer 8 Collection

The Navitimer 8 collection consists of different styles and models, each with its own distinctive personality.

The Navitimer 8 B01

Powered by Breitling’s iconic in-house Manufacture Calibre 01 automatic movement, this Navitimer 8 B01 is a powerful chronograph with an eye-catching retro style.

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Details at a glance:

-   In-house Breitling Manufacture Calibre 01 automatic movement

-   Contrast dial

-   43mm case

-   100m water resistance

-   70 hour power reserve

The Navitimer 8 Chronograph

A model which is intended to be more accessible than the B01, the Navitimer 8 Chronograph is powered by a modified Valjoux movement which is C.O.S.C. certified and accurate to 1/4 of a second.

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Details at a glance:

-   Calibre 13 automatic movement

-   Monochromatic dial design

-   43mm case

-   100m water resistance

-   42 hour power reserve

The Navitimer 8 Automatic

Simply and cleanly styled, the Navitimer 8 Automatic is a direct descendant of the Breitling Pilot’s watches from the 1930’s and ’40’s. 

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Details at a glance:

-   Calibre 17 automatic movement

-   41mm case

-   100m water resistance

-   40 hour power reserve

A collection which will appeal to both the die-hard Breitling collector and newly-converted enthusiasts alike, the Breitling Navitimer 8 collection starts from £3,000 or £56.25 per month with interest free credit

Our Verdict

Things We Like

✔ The paired-back, retro styling

✔ The aviation heritage 

 The officially chronometer certified automatic movements

 Perfect For

✔ Fans of pilot watches

✔ Those who want authentic, retro style

 Those who demand ultimate precision


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