Fact: cool watches sell better, and there’s nothing out there that’s cooler than a fighter jet. IWC deserves commendation for its Pilot’s Watch Double Chronograph. It’s a piece that’s designed after one of the most iconic fighters of the century, the F-14 Tomcat.
It’s important that firms go the extra mile to think of creative ideas to implement in each piece. If a watch is meant to recognise, say, a race car or driver, the watch should be themed appropriately. Watches that don’t attempt to connect with their inspiration are, as would be expected, uninspiring.
So a tribute to the United States Navy Fighter Weapons School (the “Top Gun” academy), should do its very best to make you feel as though you’re twisting and turning after MiGs. Keeping in character, IWC’s watch manages to do just that. At first glance, the watch looks like an altimeter. One is instantly reminded of the instrument panel in a fighter’s cockpit, or perhaps the part of the film where Tom Cruise’s Tomcat begins its dizzying fall, needles and gauges spinning out of control in the process.
The idea of red counterpoises is an added touch, but as great as the IWC watch is, we think that there’s still a lot of material that could be included. Perhaps the next piece will seize upon the legacy of the Tomcat to an even greater extent. For example, the double-engine fighter was famous for its “sweep” wing design that allowed it to fly well at extremely high speeds and manoeuvre in close combat. It was a large carrier-based aircraft that helped broaden America’s global military reach, a plane that struck fear into the hearts of the Soviets. It was legendary, and it’d be a lot of fun to see how far IWC could push the idea in a timepiece.