What do luxury watches have in common? Apart from fine detailing, meticulous precision & an air of glamour, it’s all about crafting a legacy. Luxury watches don’t just exist for today – but tell a story that generations down the line want to inspired by…
Legacy is what drives IWC Schaffhausen. Launched in 1868, the underlying aim was to create things of beauty, things of quality. That very thought dominated their approach to design – especially for the Big Pilot, one of their most memorable luxury watches for men.
First crafted for the German Air Force in the early 1940s, the Big Pilot was designed as military navigator watches in a limited edition of only 1000 pieces. With its distinctive oversized dials, these “B-Ur” watches were both functional yet beautiful. With its rotating bezel and anti-magnetic escapement, the Big Pilot slowly made its way into the firmament of classics.
The design was inspired by the aesthetics of onboard flight instruments of the early 20th century – clean lines, distinctive details and a simplicity that’s rare to match. Moreover, its legendary 55-millimetre case ensured that the Big Pilot is an icon in its own right. The design was especially engineered to meet pilots’ demands – luminescent hands and needles that tell the time clearly, crafted from robust materials such as ceramic and titanium, and an adaptability to adverse weather conditions made this the preferred choice of aviators whilst its looks ensured that civilians also were enamoured by it!
Recognized as IWC Schaffhausen’s flagship model, the Big Pilot has undergone several design and innovation updates, along with special editions. It’s most popular version till date is the Top Gun Limited Edition. Known as the movie that propelled Tom Cruise into superstardom, the Top Gun legend was born at the US Navy Fighter Weapons School. Inspired by the bravado and charisma on display there, IWC Schaffhausen launched five Pilot’s Watches. The spirit of the officers is reflected in its militarian textile strap, minimal black case and dial in military colours. The masculine watches speak of quiet fortitude and strength – which instantly appealed to men worldwide!
Today, the IWC Big Pilot is known for its quiet machismo and appeal. Clean, classic, and masculine, the watch with its many iterations, is one of the most timeless designs crafted for men – a true legacy!