Breilting Navitimer Ref. 806 1959 Re-Edition

Breitling and aviation go hand-in-hand, to the point where the watchmaker operates a flying team. That’s dedication – dedication that began with one watch: the Navitimer. First built in 1952, it’s aviation-oriented slide rule made it an instant mainstay of any professional cockpit. It was a golden era, not just for Breitling but for flight. Now, the watchmaker is looking fondly back on that era with their first ever re-issue:  the Breitling Navitimer Ref. 806 1959.

The 806 is to this day one of the most sought-after of all vintage Navitimers (it took Breitling a handful of years to really nail the design) and this re-issue is one for the purists. It’s about as authentic as you can get without buying up a shipment of new-old parts.

Breilting Navitimer Ref. 806 1959 Re-Edition

That authenticity is borderline obsessive. The beaded bezel, which varied from reference to reference, has precisely the same number of notches as the original, 60-year-old piece. That’s 94 in case you didn’t fancy counting. That bezel even has a slide rule in exact imitation of that first generation of watches. As is invariable the case with re-issues Breitling have used a vintage logo and have made sure it’s the European one rather than the signed US version.

Breilting Navitimer Ref. 806 1959 Re-Edition

It’s not just vintage fans that’ll get a kick out of it though; it’s a timeless design, one that could have been built yesterday rather than yesteryear. Plus, it has all the mod cons that Breitling have introduced over the decades, including their COSC-certified, hand-wound B09 movement, a calibre that we’ll be seeing a lot more of, I’m sure. The re-issue also has greater water resistance and new Superluminova – albeit adapted to look a little more vintage than the usual eerie green.

Breilting Navitimer Ref. 806 1959 Re-Edition

At 40.9 the new old Navitimer certainly has classical sizing down, at least compared to some of the more modern, much heftier versions. With its black, tone-on-tone dial it’s as elegant a Navitimer as we’ve ever seen. In short, the Premier collection may have been a huge leap forwards for Breitling, but it’s damn good to see them paying homage to the watch that made them… well, Breitling.

Price & Specs:

          • Model Name: Breilting Navitimer Ref. 806 1959 Re-Edition
            Ref: AB0910371B1X1
          • Case/Dial: 40.9mm width x 13.43mm height, stainless steel, black Super-LumiNova® luminescent numerals, hour and minute hands
          • Movement: Breitling Manufacture Caliber B09, mechanical, hand-wound, COSC-certified
            Functions: Hour, minute, second, column-wheel, vertical clutch, 1/4th second, 30-minute and 12-hour counter
            Frequency: 28,800vph / 4Hz
          • Power Reserve: 70h
            Water Resistance: 
            up to 3 bar (30 meters)
          • Price: $8,600 (excluding taxes), limited edition of 1959 pieces which will be available mid-2019 onwards

For more information visit Breilting’s website.