This year sees the launch of a special edition from IWC Schaffhausen that honours the fabulous flying skills of the Swiss aerobatic squadron. For fifty years, Patrouille Suisse pilots have acted as airborne ambassadors to Switzerland, demonstrating unmatched precision and perfection far beyond the country’s borders. Watch manufacturer IWC Schaffhausen, which has made Pilot’s Watches since 1936, dedicates the Pilot’s Watch Double Chronograph Edition “Patrouille Suisse” to the flying aces of the Swiss Air Force. The special edition of this watch classic is limited to 250.
“Both our Pilot’s Watches and the Patrouille Suisse team stand for Swiss precision and technical perfection,” explains Linus Fuchs, Managing Director Switzerland of IWC Schaffhausen. “Our shared values and passion for flying inspired a special limited edition designed to be a fitting tribute to the excellence of these outstanding pilots,” continues Fuchs.
FUNCTIONALITY FOR THE COCKPIT The Pilot’s Watch Double Chronograph Edition “Patrouille Suisse” features a cockpit design with coloured highlights. Mirroring the functionality of flight instruments, the displays are generously sized and clearly laid out. The hands and indices have a white luminescent coating that guarantees high legibility. The optics of this decidedly masculine time- piece are rounded off by an attractive shot-blasted stainless- steel case and a black soft strap with back-stitching.
An altimeter-shaped date display further underscores the instrument-inspired look. Three signal red elements provide highlights: the small red seconds hand, which indicates normal running; the red stopwatch seconds hand; and the small triangle on the triple date display. Another eye-catching feature is the third push-button at “10 o’clock”. This can be used to stop the split-seconds hand at any time and
then pressed again to resynchronize it with the stopwatch seconds hand, making it ideal for timing laps or intermediate times.
PROFESSIONAL INSTRUMENTS FOR PILOTS With a soft-iron inner case for protection against magnetic fields and a sapphire glass secured against sudden falls in pressure, the watch has all the credentials of a watch de- signed for flying. The 46-millimetre stainless-steel case of the Pilot’s Watch Double Chronograph Edition “Patrouille Suisse” is water-resistant to 6 bar and houses a rugged 79230-calibre self-winding chronograph movement. The movement permits the recording of single and aggregate times up to 12 hours and has a power reserve of 44 hours. The case back is decorated with an engraving of three jet fighters that allude to the Northrop F-5E Tiger II, in which Patrouille Suisse pilots fly tightly knit formations at speeds of up to 1000 kph. The inscription “TRIBUTE TO PATROUILLE SUISSE” and the consecutive numbering (1/250, 2/250 etc.) indicate the special limited edition. The Pilot’s Watch Double Chronograph Edition “Patrouille Suisse” will be available from May 2014, initially only from IWC Boutiques in Switzerland and Swiss retailers, but later at IWC Bou- tiques worldwide.
PIONEERS IN THE DEVELOPMENT OF PILOT’S WATCHES IWC developed its first Pilot’s Watch almost 80 years ago. In 1936, the so-called Special Pilot’s Watch started out on a professional mission in the service of pilots. It was de- signed to withstand the difficult conditions encountered in the cockpit of aircraft at that time. The Schaffhausen- based manufacturer’s passion spurred its engineers and watchmakers on to ever-greater technical achievement. Today, IWC’s Pilot’s Watches are very popular and elegantly combine modern technology with traditional values.
THE PATROUILLE SUISSE The formations they fly go by names such as Eiger, Matter- horn, Delta or Shadow. The Swiss Air Force’s professional pilots in their red-and-white Tiger jets perform loops, simultaneous rolls and tunnels at breathtaking speeds, sometimes just 60 metres above the ground. The Patrouille Suisse aerobatics squadron was established to mark the fiftieth anniversary of the Swiss Air Force in 1964. Since then, the flying skills of the aerobatics team, comprising six Tiger pilots, have made them much-acclaimed ambas- sadors of Switzerland wherever they appear. The fascination of formation flying continues to draw hundreds of thousands of enthusiasts to air shows at home and abroad.
- Mechanical chronograph movement
- Day and date display
- Small hacking seconds
- Stopwatch function with hours, minutes and seconds
- Split-seconds hand for intermediate timing
- Soft-iron inner case for protection against magnetic fields
- Screw-in crown
- Glass secured against displacement by drop in air pressure
- Limited to 250 consecutively numbered watches
- Calibre 79230
- Frequency 28,800 A/h / 4 Hz
- Jewels 29
- Power reserve 44 h
- Winding automatic
- Materials shot-blasted stainless-steel case, grey dial, black soft strap, folding clasp in stainless steel (shot-blasted)
- Glass sapphire, convex, anti-reflective coating on both sides
- Water-resistant 6 bar
- Diameter 46 mm
- Case height 17.5 mm