IWC Schaffhausen debuted its ceramic Pilot’s Chronographs at the Watches and Wonders 2023 in Geneva. The watches measure 41 millimetres in diameter. The blue ceramic case of the Pilot’s Watch Chronograph 41 TOP GUN “Oceana” was developed in tandem with Pantone® and was motivated by the color of U.S. Navy working dungarees. IWC’s first 41mm Pilot’s Chronograph, the “Jet Black” zirconium oxide ceramic cased Pilot’s Watch Chronograph 41 TOP GUN.
In 2022, IWC debuted “The Colors of TOP GUN,” a line of Pilot’s Watches made from colored ceramic. It featured chronographs in fresh, eye-catching colors like IWC’s Lake Tahoe white and Pantone’s Woodland green. The Swiss luxury watchmaker has added two new chronographs to the collection, both with a 41mm case diameter that makes them comfortable to wear every day. IWC’s Pilot’s Watch Chronograph 41 is available for the first time in a ceramic case, which is both extremely hard and scratch-resistant. The 69380 calibre, made by IWC, is a mechanical chronograph that powers both of these timepieces.
TOP GUN Chronograph 41 Pilot’s Watch
Oceana (Ref. 389404) has a blue ceramic case. Pantone®, an IWC partner and recognised authority on color, collaborated with IWC to develop the “Oceana” ceramic colour. The blue derives from the uniform worn by U.S. Navy pilots while performing difficult tasks on aircraft carriers: the blue dungarees. The blue rubber strap with denim-like textile inlay complements the blue chronograph dial. The dial and the black hands both feature luminescent markings for easy nighttime viewing. Titanium, a lightweight metal, is used for both the pushers and the case back.
TOP GUN Chronograph 41 Pilot’s Watch
This is the first black ceramic Pilot’s Chronograph from IWC (Ref. 389401). Since 2007 when the IWC TOP GUN line was first introduced, its signature material has been its “Jet Black” ceramic, which was inspired by the technical components of supersonic jets. The completely black ceramic case is matched by a black dial and a black rubber strap. Even in low light, you can read the time thanks to the luminescent markers on the black hands and the dial. The titanium crown and back finish off the sporty appearance. Thanks to the built-in IWC EasX-CHANGE® system, swapping out the strap is a breeze that requires no extra equipment.
Superior performance and clarity without compromise
The 69380 calibre, made by IWC, drives both of these timepieces. The engineering of this calibre family prioritised sturdiness, dependability, and longevity. The stopped minutes are conveniently located at 12 o’clock. IWC’s functional design philosophy led to the vertical dial layout, which is now instantly recognisable as a hallmark of the brand’s chronographs. The inner movements of both new models are shielded from magnetic fields by a soft-iron case. The front lenses are fastened in a way that makes them impervious to pressure changes in the cockpit. In addition, the water resistance of both watches is 10 bars.
A fore-frontier of ceramic applications
When it comes to using ceramic for watch cases, IWC Schaffhausen was an early adopter. The first wristwatch case to be made of black zirconium oxide ceramic was the Da Vinci Perpetual Calendar Chronograph (Ref. 3755), released by the brand in 1986. IWC was also an early pioneer in the use of coloured ceramics like white, blue, and green, among others. Making a coloured ceramic watch case is an engineering marvel. The ceramic’s colour comes from a combination of zirconium oxide and other metallic oxides. Therefore, a unique set of materials and a specific proportion for mixing are needed for each colour. Each ceramic colour requires a unique production method and set of parameters, such as temperature and sintering time, to bring it to life. In addition, the raw materials for coloured ceramics must meet exceptionally stringent standards of cleanliness.
Only select IWC boutiques will have the Pilot’s Watch Chronograph 41 TOP GUN “Oceana.” IWC boutiques, authorised retail partners, and IWC.com all sell the Pilot’s Watch Chronograph 41 TOP GUN. The International Limited Warranty is normally 2 years, but if you register your watch with the My IWC program, you’ll get an additional 6 years of protection.