IWC Schaffhausen is adding two Ceratanium® models to its TOP GUN Pilot’s Watch range. Engineered in Schaffhausen, this innovative new material combines the structural integrity of titanium with a scratch resistance similar to that of ceramic and features a striking matte black colour. The Big Pilot’s Watch Perpetual Calendar TOP GUN Ceratanium is the first watch from IWC with a Ceratanium® bracelet, which is lighter than steel and very comfortable to wear. The Pilot’s Watch Timezoner TOP GUN Ceratanium is the first TOP GUN model with a Timezoner® complication, allowing the wearer to change between different time zones effortlessly. Both novelties are powered by IWC-manufactured movements from the 52000 and 82000 calibre families.
Advanced performance materials such as ceramics, titanium and Ceratanium® are a signature feature of IWC’s TOP GUN pilot’s watches. They take their name from the legendary Strike Fighter Tactics Instructor Program, a rigorous course used by the US Navy to train its elite pilots in flying and tactical skills. TOP GUN watches are engineered to deliver ultimate performance and can withstand even the extreme strain pilots experience in the cockpit of a supersonic jet.
After pioneering the use of ceramics and titanium for wristwatches during the 1980s, IWC’s material engineers have now succeeded in combining the unique strengths of these two in a single, ground-breaking material. Developed over five years, Ceratanium® combines the lightness and structural integrity of titanium with a hardness and scratch-resistance similar to ceramic. In addition, Ceratanium® is also skin-friendly and highly resistant to corrosion.
“Ceratanium® is unique not only because of its outstanding material properties. With its matte black color, it also enables us to manufacture watches in a completely jet-black design. After introducing several models with Ceratanium® cases, we are now going one step further and for the first time present a bracelet crafted from this innovative material,” – Christoph Grainger-Herr, CEO of IWC Schaffhausen
The Big Pilot’s Watch Perpetual Calendar TOP GUN Ceratanium (Ref. IW503604) features a case, crown and, for the first time, a bracelet made of Ceratanium®. As this material is based on a titanium alloy, the bracelet is around 30 per cent lighter than a steel bracelet and extremely comfortable to wear. The black dial with grey numerals enhances the jet-black design. This TOP GUN model is powered by the IWC-manufactured 52615 calibre, visible through the tinted sapphire glass case back. The Pellaton winding system is fitted with components made of virtually wear-free ceramic and builds up a power reserve of seven days in two barrels. A single nightly switching impulse from the base movement drives the perpetual calendar. Its mechanical program automatically recognizes different month lengths and leap years and will require no correction until 2100. Another IWC speciality is the specific moon phase display, which depicts the moon as it is seen from the Northern and Southern Hemispheres. It is so precise that it will only deviate by one day after 577.5 years. The annual production of this extraordinary timepiece will be limited to 150 pieces.
The Pilot’s Watch Timezoner TOP GUN Ceratanium (Ref. IW395505) is the first TOP GUN model with a Timezoner® complication. The watch can be set to a different time zone by simply pressing down and rotating the bezel. The hour hand, the 24-hour display and the date will move forwards or backwards in one-hour steps. This also works across the dateline and without losing a single second. The case is made of Ceratanium®, while the city ring is manufactured from ceramic. It contains the names of 24 cities, each one representing one of the international time zones. The numerals are printed in grey on the dial, while the numbers 12, 3, 6 and 9 are coated with a luminescent material. The jet-black tactical design is complemented with a tinted sapphire glass case back and a black rubber strap with textile inlay. The IWC-manufactured 82760 calibre uses a Pellaton winding system reinforced with ceramic components to build up a power reserve of 60 hours in the mainspring. The annual production of the Pilot’s Watch Timezoner TOP GUN Ceratanium will be limited to 500 pieces.
Machined from bars and fired at high temperatures
Ceratanium® is arguably one of IWC’s most important material innovations in recent years. IWC first used this material in 2017 for the case of the Aquatimer Perpetual Calendar Digital Date-Month Edition “50 Years Aquatimer” (Ref. 379403). In 2019, the Pilot’s Watch Double Chronograph TOP GUN Ceratanium (Ref. IW371815) was the first all-black Pilot’s Watch. Ceratanium® is based on a special titanium alloy that is forged to IWC’s specifications. The case components are machined from bars to minimal tolerances using computer-controlled turning and milling centres and are then elaborately finished by hand. Afterwards, the components are fired in a kiln at high temperatures. During this firing process, a phase transformation occurs. As a result, the surface of the material not only obtains properties similar to ceramics, such as hardness and scratch-resistance, but also its striking matte black finish.
The Big Pilot’s Watch Perpetual Calendar TOP GUN Ceratanium and the Pilot’s Watch Timezoner TOP GUN Ceratanium are available now through IWC boutiques, authorized retail partners or online at IWC.com. In addition, both timepieces are eligible for registration under the My IWC care program and thus benefit from a 6-year extension to the standard 2-year International Limited Warranty.
IWC Big Pilot’s Watch Perpetual Calendar Top Gun Ceratanium Technical Specifications
Mechanical movement – Pellaton automatic winding system – Power reserve display – Perpetual Calendar with displays for the date, day, month, year in four digits and perpetual moon phase for both Northern and Southern Hemispheres – Small hacking seconds – Screw-in crown – Glass secured against displacement caused by drops in air pressure – See-through sapphire-glass back
IWC-manufactured calibre 52615
Frequency 28,800 vph / 4 Hz
Power reserve 7 days (168 h)
Materials Ceratanium® case, black dial, black hands, Ceratanium® bracelet with folding clasp
Glass Sapphire, arched edge, antireflective coating on both sides
Water-resistant 6 bar
Diameter 46.2 mm
Height 15.4 mm
IWC Pilot’s Watch Timezoner Top Gun Ceratanium Technical Specifications
Mechanical movement – Pellaton automatic winding – Date display – Central hacking seconds – Timezoner® function for setting another time zone using the rotating bezel – 24-hour display for Worldtimer function – Screw-in crown – Glass secured against displacement caused by drops in air pressure
IWC-manufactured calibre 82760
Frequency 28,800 vph / 4 Hz
Power reserve 60 h
Materials Ceratanium® case, ceramic rotating bezel, black dial, black hands, black rubber strap with textile inlay and pin buckle
Glass Sapphire, convex, antireflective coating on both sides
Water-resistant 6 bar
Diameter 46 mm
Height 15.1 mm