When every watchmaker is doing vintage re-release, we can’t blame Breitling who’s joining in the fever considering the many cool historical references in its catalog—one of them is the “Co-Pilot” Ref. 765 AVI from 1953. A cool vintage mid-century pilot’s watch that’s highly sought-after by collectors, the new model offers updated materials, construction, and technology.
The rebirth of the mid-century military watch was first teased by Breitling boss Georges Kern 67 years later through his Instagram. The new version, dubbed the AVI (standing for “Aviation) Ref. 765 1953 Re-Edition or also known as the “Co-Pilot” goes modern yet stays faithful to its original design that was intended to evoke cockpit clocks of the era.
Measuring at 41.1 mm, a highly-domed crystal, and a 12-hour screw-secured bezel, the handsome watch is a one-to-one recreation of its original version. For the extra retro touch and authentic feel, the modern version uses the Hesalite for the crystal, the same massive Arabic numerals from the original coated with Super-LumiNova, as well as an aged-looking thin syringe hands that exactly match those on the earliest examples.
What lies beneath the stainless steel is the modern twist; the Breitling in-house B-09 movement. The B-09 makes a proper movement—not just because of its hand-wound like the movement of the original 765—but it ticks at 4 Hz and also has a power reserve of 70 hours. It also has an improved water-resistance level up to 30m.
The elegant timepiece will be available three different versions with different limited pieces, releasing at different times with different prices. Check out the previous re-edition from Breitling which became a best-selling homage to the watchmaker’s most iconic model, the Navitimer Ref. 806 1959 Re-Edition.
Breitling AVI Ref. 765 1953 Re-Edition Steel
Release: March 2020
Limited to 1,953 pieces
Priced at $8,250
Breitling AVI Ref. 765 1953 Re-Edition Rose Gold
Release: May 2020
Limited to 253 pieces
Priced at $21,923
Breitling AVI Ref. 765 1953 Re-Edition Platinum
Release: June 2020
Limited to 153 pieces
Priced at $40,750
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