Zenith is one of the few brands making watches in the early pilot’s style to have a genuine historic prototype on which to base its new models. The original timepiece made for Louis Blériot in 1909 set the scene for pilot’s watches, with its cathedral hands, large, chunky numerals, and a crown large enough to be used with flying gloves. Now, in addition to the large Zenith Pilot Type 20 Extra Special, this timepiece is now available in a 40mm version, 12.95 mm thick, suitable for all wrists, and most importantly, women’s wrists. Price €5,900.
Extra feminine attraction is added by the strap colours, mustard, khaki, blue or burgundy, with corresponding dials, slate-grey, khaki, blue or burgundy. A vintage spirit is retained by the case and caseback in aged steel, the grained-finish dial, and the large, fluted crown. The watch becomes a practical, everyday timepiece with its excellent water resistance of 100 metres, and good visibility in low lighting provided by the numerals entirely in SuperLuminova. The straps are in leather or oily nubuck with a protective rubber lining and a titanium pin buckle. The overall effect is warm, even hygge.
Inside, there is an in-house movement, the automatic Zenith Elite 679 calibre, which provides a 50-hour power reserve. It has 126 components and runs at 28,800 vibrations per hour, 4 Hertz.
Versions and price
The references available for the Zenith Pilot Type 20 Extra Special 40 mm are:
11.1940.679/91.C807 (slate grey dial, mustard strap)
11.1940.679/63.C800 (khaki dial, khaki strap)
11.1940.679/53.C808 (blue dial, blue strap)
11.1940.679/94.C814 (burgundy dial, burgundy strap)
They all cost €5,900.
Further information from the Zenith website.