One of the best sellers on the IWC Schaffhausen inventory, the “Big Pilot” returns with a titanium or bronze casing, for this “Heritage” version. Preserving the historic military aesthetics that IWC has cultivated an association to, especially with their Big Pilot’s series. 


Image courtesy of: IWC

It was just last year that IWC reintroduced a series of interesting pilot watches from their collection. Like the “bigger” enhanced “Big Pilot Heritage 55 & 48” made with larger casings than ever before. They served as a callback and homage to the 1940’s when these huge watches were highly useful as auxiliary tools for pilots in combat; we reviewed them here at the time.

IWC Big Pilot Heritage 55  on PLANE Capture

The previous “IWC Big Pilot Heritage 55 & 48” editions. * Image courtesy of: IWC

Another piece that comes to mind is the “IWC Pilot’s Watch Timezoner Chronograph” (Ref#: IW395001). It premiered the inclusion of a “quick-set” time-zone on a multi-time zone watch by IWC. This complication was accomplished by Michael Vogt and later acquired by IWC, as we reviewed here. Or check out the gorgeous 18k rose gold “IWC Big Pilot Perpetual Calendar Boutique Edition” (Ref#: IW5026-39) currently still iN stock and also with an in-depth review here.

IWC Big Pilot Poutique LTD ED -dial

“IWC Big Pilot Perpetual Calendar Boutique Edition” (Ref#: IW5026-39)

The 46.2mm case is available in either titanium or bronze with a solid screw on case back. The titanium version weighs less than 150 grams. Its design was inspired by the iconic “Big Pilot’s Watch Calibre 52 T.S.C. And comes equipped with a big onion-style screw-in crown and is topped by a sapphire convex glass with an antireflective coating on both sides. The glass is secured against displacement by drop in air pressure.  The bronze version is a limited edition of only 1500 pieces. Water-resistance on this watch can reach up to 60 meters (196 feet).


Image courtesy of: IWC

Time is exhibited on a black dial with beige Arabic numerals and the iconic IWC “triangle” with a dot on each side, located at the 12 o’clock position. The 3 o’clock numeral is also missing and in its place is a power reserve sub-dial. While the 6 o’clock numeral has also been omitted to allow for a date aperture. There is also a beige railroad motif minute track circling around the dial.

IWC-Big-Pilots-Watch-Bronze-2 - Copy

Image courtesy of: IWC

The central propeller hands are also colored beige for a faux-patina vintage look with blue accents outlining them. Also both the hands, Arabic numerals and minute index markers have all undergone a luminescent coating, for an enhanced legibility.


Image courtesy of: IWC

IWC Big Pilot’s Heritage

The “IWC Big Pilot’s Heritage” (References below) is powered by a self-winding mechanical watch, caliber 52110 with 31 jewels and 28,800 vph. Featuring IWC’s historic Pellaton automatic winding system: equipped with a soft-iron inner case which offers protection against magnetic fields; plus winding system parts made from black or white ceramic. And the movement is also decorated with a Côtes de Genève perlage finishing. Power reserve on this timepiece can last up to  168 hours (7 days), when fully wound.


Image courtesy of: IWC

Mounted to the watch is an IWC brown calfskin strap with exposed stitching, while secured to the wrist by either a titanium or bronze pin buckle, depending on the selected version. And should be available starting in November 2017 from IWC boutiques, for more up to date information you can visit the official IWC Schaffhausen website here.  You can also sneak a peek at the various IWC watches we currently have iN stock from their “Pilot” collection.


MSRP: $13,200.00 USD – (titanium – Ref#: IW501004)


MSRP: $13,200.00 USD – (bronze is a limited edition of 1500 pieces – Ref#: IW501005)


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IWC Schaffhausen, IWC, Big Pilot, Heritage, Luxury Watches

Written by Mauro Az