Breitling is synonymous with aviation, but at the heart of this pioneering relationship is its precision engineering and attention to detail. Leon Breitling founded his eponymous company – one of the few Swiss watchmakers that is still independently owned today – in 1884, and innovation was championed from the very beginning.
In the early '30s, Breitling created a 'speciality' that would change aviation: the onboard chronograph. Indispensable for pilots, they were used by the Royal Air Force on its WWII propeller-driven fighter planes. The onboard chronograph made Breitling a key player in the commercial aviation boom of the '50s and '60s, as the models became standard equipment on many planes.
Enjoying cult-like status among pilots and enthusiasts alike since its launch in 1952, the Navitimer has been being manufactured for almost 60 years, making it the oldest mechanical chronograph still in production.