Watches And Wonders 2022: IWC Schaffhausen
New materials and colours from IWC Schaffhausen at Watches And Wonders 2022.
IWC Schaffhausen’s irresistible Pilot’s Watch collection and knack for teasing out evocative colours and performance qualities from atypical materials lie at the heart of the company’s Watches And Wonders 2022 showcase.
Having made pilot’s watches since 1936, IWC is literally synonymous today with this category of watches, with an entire eponymous collection devoted to them. Even within this niche category, IWC offers a variety of models that span a range of designs and technical features. Its Pilot’s Watch family comprises a basic and utilitarian 1940s-inspired collection (‘Classic’), special editions (‘Antoine de Saint Exupéry’ and ‘Le Petit Prince’), a line that is slightly more refined (‘Spitfire’) and the ‘Top Gun’, the most aggressive-looking and dynamic range in both style and spirit, that stars in this year’s showcase.
This year, IWC plays to the Top Gun collection’s strongest suits with a quartet of new creations: the Pilot’s Watch Chronograph Top Gun Edition ‘Lake Tahoe’, Pilot’s Watch Chronograph Top Gun Edition ‘Woodland’, Pilot’s Watch Chronograph 41 Top Gun Edition ‘Ceratanium’, and Big Pilot’s Watch 43 Top Gun.
As its name suggests, the Pilot’s Watch Chronograph 41 Top Gun Edition ‘Ceratanium’ (above) is housed in a 41mm case – the first 41mm chronograph in the collection – made of ceratanium. Developed in 2017, the proprietary alloy is a hybrid material that combines ceramic and titanium, fusing the former’s scratch-resistant quality with the latter’s lightness and hardiness.
The Top Gun Edition ‘Lake Tahoe’, Top Gun Edition ‘Woodland’, and Big Pilot’s Watch 43 Top Gun, on the other hand, are clad in hardy and scratch-resistant ceramic cases - 44.5mm for the first two models, and 43mm for the latter (a new case size, too, for the Big Pilot’s Watch collection). Incidentally, IWC’s first Top Gun model from 2012, the Pilot’s Watch Double Chronograph Edition Top Gun, debuted in a ceramic case.
A picture of pristine athleticism, the ‘Lake Tahoe’ model comes in white ceramic case with matching rubber strap that channels the wintry colours of the lake of the same name, which the Top Gun academy frequently uses as a training ground. The Top Gun Edition ‘Woodland’ (below), on the other hand, exudes monochromatic military-style chic. The watch comes in a matte green ceramic case with matching fabric and rubber strap inspired by the combat flight suits worn by naval aviators.
Finally, for fans of time-only pilot’s watches, the Big Pilot’s Watch 43 Top Gun offers that unfussy tool watch aesthetic while guaranteeing wrist presence. Bearing the signature characteristics of the collection such as huge legible display, high-contrast dial and large tapered crown, the Big Pilot’s Watch 43 Top Gun in matte black ceramic case turns up the sexiness several notches to complement the watches’ machismo.
Engine-wise, all four watches are powered by IWC’s workhorse automatic movements shielded by soft-iron inner cases for resistance against magnetic fields: the Calibre 69380 chronograph movement with column-wheel for the ‘Lake Tahoe’ and ‘Woodland’, the Calibre 69385 for the Top Gun ‘Ceratanium’, and the Calibre 82100 for the Big Pilot’s Watch 43 Top Gun.