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Cockpit classics

The very best pilot watches

Cockpit classics
16 July 2012

Ensure you avoid unnecessary delays with this autumn’s authentic aviation-inspired timepieces

Origins of the pilot’s watch

When planes first graced the sky, timekeeping was exclusive to the pocket watch. Later, the First World War saw functionality prevail over aesthetic, and a watch was tied to the thigh for visibility. That was fine in the air, but not so practical on the ground. This finally led to the Pilot’s wristwatch, and that’s where they’ve stayed since.

(Image 1 left) Top Gun automatic chronograph watch £9,750 by IWC; iwc.com

(Image 1 centre) Navitimer 01 watch, £5,760 by BREITLING; 020-7637 5167

(Image 1 right) Vintage BR 123 Heritage watch, £1,950 by BELL & ROSS; bellross.com

(Image 2 left) Khaki X-Patrol watch, £1,300 by HAMILTON; 0845-275 2900

(Image 2 centre) Aviator GW-4000D £400 by G-SHOCK PREMIUM; casioonline.co.uk

(Image 2 right) Lindbergh Hour Angle, £3,110 by LONGINES; 0845-272 6500