Prince of the Skies: IWC Pilot’s Watch Timezoner Edition “Le Petit Prince”

IWC welcomed the Timezoner Chronograph, distinguished by its integration of a flyback chronograph with a patented, easy-to-use world time function, into its Pilot’s Watch collection in 2016. Since then, a version without the stopwatch has joined the vintage-inspired Pilot’s Watch Spitfire sub-family. Now the latest version of that streamlined complication makes its debut in a special edition from another branch of the Pilot’s Watch tree, the Pilot’s Watch Timezoner Edition “Le Petit Prince.”

The Pilot’s Watch “Le Petit Prince” sub-series, reserved for high complications and more elegant aesthetics than the more military-influenced Pilot’s models, pays tribute to French aviator/author Antoine Saint-Exupéry and his most famous literary work, “Le Petit Prince” (The Little Prince”). This watch represents the first use of the Timezoner function in a Le Petit Prince timepiece. The case is in stainless steel, 46 mm in diameter and 15.2 mm thick, and sports an eye-catching midnight blue dial and a matching midnight blue city ring made of ceramic. The case’s screw-down crown helps ensure a 60-meter water resistance, the sapphire crystal with double-sided nonreflective coating is secured against displacement by air pressure drops, and the dial’s white hands and numerals are luminous-coated.

The watch is equipped with IWC’s automatic Caliber 82760 (essentially the Caliber 89760 that powered the first Timezoner model, minus the chronograph elements), whose patented world-time functionality allows the wearer to quickly and easily re-set the time, along with the date and 24-hour display below 12 o’clock, in a single turn of the bezel. Simply press the city-ring bezel down to turn it so the city representing the desired time zone is at 12 o’clock, then release it: both the hour hand and the 24-hour disk will move synchronously with the turning of the bezel, and the date display will also change accordingly, either forward or backward. The 24-hour indication ensures that the wearer will always know at a glance whether it is day or night in the home time zone. The advance of the minute hand, and all the watch’s other functions, are unaffected while changing time zones. The movement, visible behind a sapphire caseback, features IWC’s bidirectional Pellaton winding system and incorporates virtually wear-free components made of zirconium oxide ceramic. Like its siblings in the “Le Petit Prince” family, it’s got a golden badge with an engraved depiction of Saint-Exupéry’s titular character on the rotor.

The IWC Pilot’s Watch Timezoner Edition “Le Petit Prince” is mounted on a brown pilot-style calfskin strap with contrast stitching, limited to 1,500 pieces, and priced at $13,800.

For more detail on the Timezoner function and how it works, read our review of the original Timezoner Chronograph here.

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