Watches: IWC Pilot's Watch Top Gun Boutique Editions

By Thierry Ané on November 25, 2013

2012 was the year of the Pilot’s watch for IWC and, as they do every year with a particular collection, they entirely revamped the line. This year, IWC extends the Pilot’s watch squadron with three beautiful creations that are only available in IWC boutiques around the world.

Part of the Top Gun line, the trio consists of a Pilot Chronograph Top Gun (IW388003), a Big Pilot Top Gun (IW501903) and a Big Pilot Perpetual Calendar Top Gun (IW502903). The watches are respectively produced in limited runs of 500, 500 and 250 pieces.

Before commenting on each watch individually, let us start by what they have in common. All three models are crafted in black ceramic with a matte finish and the crowns, pushers for the chronograph model and case back are made of titanium. Like all Top Gun models the reverse side is adorned with the United States Navy Fighter Weapons School logo. These watches are fitted with a black textile strap, secured by a titanium pin buckle. Lastly, these watches are equipped with IWC-manufactured calibres like the entire Top Gun collection.

Pilot Chronograph Top Gun Boutique Edition

At 46.00 mm, the Pilot Chronograph Top Gun is the smallest watch in this series but it will certainly not go unnoticed on the wrist. Powered by the 89365 calibre, this watch offers a 68-hour power reserve for the time and date displays as well as for the flyback chronograph function. For this model IWC opted for blue hands, Arabic numerals and indices. The tiny aircraft silhouette at the rear end of the seconds hand has also been covered by the blue SuperLuminova.

Find out more about the IWC Pilot Chronograph Top Gun Blue Black Ceramic

Big Pilot Top Gun Boutique Edition

The Big Pilot has always been an iconic IWC model. It now houses the in-house 51111 calibre, consisting of 311 components. With its efficient Pellaton winding system, the watch showcases an impressive power reserve of 7 days indicated at 3 o’clock. The green colour on the numerals, indices and hands contrasts nicely with the black dial. There are dozens of limited versions of IWC’s famous Big Pilot model. You can browse the pages of the Watch-Agora database (or the IWC Big Pilot CollectorDownload IWC Big Pilot Collector on the App Store app) to discover them. Doing so, you will agree with me that this green version is certainly the most modern interpretation of the Big Pilot so far.

Find out more about the IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Green Black Ceramic

Big Pilot Perpetual Calendar Top Gun Boutique Edition

I have saved the “haute horlogerie” piece for the end: the Big Pilot Perpetual Calendar Top Gun. I am not sure if it is necessary to present the IWC-manufactured 51614 calibre again. With a 7-day power reserve, this perpetual calendar offers a four-digit year display and presents the state of the moon in the southern and northern hemispheres. It is one of IWC’s largest and most elaborate movements. Like the Big Pilot, we have seen a good share of limited versions of this watch over the years. Nothing as modern, though, as this all black timepiece with bright red accents (again for the hands, numerals and indices).

Find out more about the IWC Big Pilot Perpetual Calendar Top Gun Red Black Ceramic

I think that IWC’s designers have made a terrific job with these models. Because they are so different, I think that even if you have another version of any of these three timepieces, you may want to buy the limited edition as well.