Within the 1970s and 1980s, issues weren’t wanting so nice for the tried-and-true mechanical watch. Compact, extremely correct quartz watches had flooded the market, and an increasing number of individuals had been taking a move on the intricate craftsmanship of mechanical watches and choosing battery-powered choices. However Swiss watchmaker Breitling wasn’t content material to let the mechanical timepiece fall by the wayside. To have a good time its 100th anniversary in 1984, the model launched the Chronomat, a mechanical watch that demonstrated a powerful dedication to spring-powered watches, and it quickly grew to become an icon. Now the watchmaker has launched the Chronomat B01 42, and it references all the pieces we love concerning the unique: It’s extremely practical, presents refined styling, and brings some attention-grabbing historical past to your wrist.


The Chronomat identify really goes again even additional than 1984. In accordance with a press launch, Breitling first hooked up the label to a few of its watches within the 1940s, and the phrase was a portmanteau of “chronograph for arithmetic” (this was lengthy earlier than the Casio calculator watch appeared). The 1984 Chronomat recycled the identify, however this time it referred to the watch’s self-winding, or automated, motion—a notable departure from the quartz watches that had been so widespread on the time.

“It was the watch that boldly proclaimed Breitling was staying completely true to its roots,” Breitling CEO Georges Kern stated in an announcement.

The 1984 Chronomat took design cues from a timepiece Breitling had beforehand created to honor the Frecce Tricolori, the aerobatic demonstration staff of the Italian Air Drive. With its tachymeter for calculating pace and its rotating bezel, it rapidly grew to become widespread with aviators, in addition to Method 1 drivers and boaters.


In the present day’s Chronomat is available in a dizzying variety of variations to swimsuit each style, however all keep true to the design heritage of the ‘80s unique—or “modern-retro,” as Breitling describes it. The watch encompasses a 42-millimeter stainless-steel case with an built-in Rouleaux bracelet for a smooth look on the wrist (there’s additionally a rubber bracelet accessible for a sportier really feel). Like the unique, the Chronomat B01 42 comes with a rotating unidirectional bezel with rider tabs. Though a small element at first look, the tabs serve an necessary function: They shield the timepiece’s sapphire glass, and the tabs at three o’clock and 9 o’clock are interchangeable, which lets you make the most of “depend down” or “depend up” capabilities.

Breitling Chronomat B01 42 Bentley Edition
Breitling Chronomat B01 42 Bentley Version Breitling

We additionally love that the Chronomat is available in such a variety of finishes, which makes it attainable to nab a novel timepiece that additionally suits effectively together with your wardrobe. For instance, you may go for a silver, copper, or blue dial with black contrasting chronograph counters, or a black dial with silver contrasting chronograph counters. There are additionally a number of choices with hanging pink gold accents, and two eye-catching particular editions: a Bentley edition honoring the famed British carmaker and a restricted version (solely 250 accessible) honoring the Frecce Tricolori.

Breitling Chronomat B01 42 Frecce Tricolori Limited Edition
Breitling Chronomat B01 42 Frecce Tricolori Restricted Version Breitling

Irrespective of which you select, you’ll get a really well-designed watch. Breitling’s Manufacture Caliber 01 motion powers each Chronomat, and every timepiece boasts a 70-hour energy reserve. Plus, they’re water-resistant to 200 meters, which makes them greater than prepared for the pains of every day put on.

Over three many years after the “quartz revolution,” we’re comfortable to see that mechanical watches—particularly the Chronomat—are nonetheless going sturdy.

[$8,100; breitling.com]

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