IWC comes back with a new limited edition, honoring one of its favorite ambassadors (unfortunately not with us anymore), Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, pilot and writer, and its most famous character, ‘le Petit Prince’. Using the same concept as several other editions of the Pilot collection, it is now the Big Pilot that is paying tribute to one of the most classical books of all time. Please welcome the IWC Big Pilot Watch Edition ‘Le Petit Prince’.
Several other watches of the Pilot collection had been used to serve as a tribute to Antoine de Saint-Exupéry and ‘Le Petit Prince’. Remember in 2013, we introduced you to the IWC Big Pilot Perpetual Calendar and Mark XVII Limited Special Edition ‘Le Petit Prince‘. This year we had the chance to get our hands on the chronograph edition. If you look closely at those 3 watches, they are all sharing a same scheme: pilot watches adorned with a special dial, a distinctive strap and, of course, a caseback especially engraved with the representation of the little prince.
IWC is applying now the recipe to the Big Pilot Watch, certainly the most emblematic timepiece of the Pilot Collection, alongside the Mark series. What is the big Pilot? Well, you can guess from its name that is not the smallest watch of them all. It comes with a 46mm case made of stainless steel, a diamond-shaped crown reminding of the true pilot watches’ crowns and a very large opening of the dial that may accentuate its overall size. The original pilot watches from IWC – a.k.a. Beobachtungsuhr or B-Uhr – were fitted with large pocket watch movements. The modern IWC Big Pilot also uses the same concept with a huge in-house automatic movement – the Calibre 51111 – that boasts 7 days of power reserve. All the details about the IWC Big Pilot can be found here.
What differentiates the IWC Big Pilot Watch Edition ‘Le Petit Prince’ from a classical edition? The first distinctive feature is the dial, that not only comes with a specific colour and finish – a very pleasant midnight blue with a sun-burst pattern – but also with different indexes. When the classical edition comes with white, painted numerals and hands, this limited edition has applied rhodium-plated hands and indexes, coated with Super-LumiNova. The dial gains some more exclusivity and depth without losing its superb legibility – both during the day or at night-time. The minute track is also different, with numerical indications every 5 minutes and graduations for the 1/4 of a second.
The typical pilot strap with rivets – an historical feature of the pilot watches – now comes in brown calfskin. Finally, the back of the watch shows a full cover with a sketch of ‘Le Petit Prince’ engraved and the number of the watch. The IWC Big Pilot Watch Edition ‘Le Petit Prince’ is limited to 1000 pieces.
- Mechanical movement Calibre 51111 — Pellaton automatic winding system — 7-day power reserve when fully wound — Power reserve display — Date display — Central hacking seconds — Glucydur®* beryllium alloy balance — Breguet spring — Screw-in crown — Limited to 1,000 watches — Special engraving featuring the little prince and inscription “IWC ∙ LE PETIT PRINCE ∙ ONE OUT OF 1000” on case back.
- Case and folding clasp in stainless steel, midnight blue dial, rhodium-plated hands and indices, coated with Super-LumiNova®*, brown calfskin strap with quilted stitching
- Glass: sapphire, convex, antireflective coating on both sides, withstands drops in air pressure
- Case diameter 46mm, Case height 16mm, Water resistance 6 bar