At a time when aviation was still in its infancy, Zenith developed onboard instruments that contributed to extraordinary feats, such as French pilot Louis Blériot’s cross-Channel flight in 1909. Paying homage to the adventurous, conquering spirit of this airborne pioneer, the Manufacture presents an exclusive timepiece fitted with a meteorite dial and driven by the famous Calibre 5011K, entirely engraved with the memory of this fabulous saga.
Crafted in a five-piece limited edition, the new Pilot Type 20 Hommage à Louis Blériot is thus by nature a rare and coveted object. With its distinctive 60 mm-diameter case carved from a block of sapphire and topped by a bezel, lugs and large ratcheted crown in white gold, this aviator’s watch dares to stand out from the crowd. Witness its fascinating deep grey meteorite dial, graced with a natural motif forming interlacing ribbons against a finely sandblasted background. This fragment of the Muonionalusta asteroid, which sped through the atmosphere and fell to earth between Sweden and Finland, comes from a region located 140 km from the Arctic Circle.
Beneath the imposing domed sapphire crystal, the display provided by characterised oversized Arabic numerals and stylised hands enhanced with a phosphorescent material ensures optimal read-off for all its functions. The powerful lines and singular design of the Pilot collection are set off to their best advantage by the spectacular sapphire case water-resistant to 30 metres, representing a magnificent feat of craftsmanship and housing an equally remarkable beating heart: the entirely hand-engraved Calibre 5011K. Having set impressive precision records in its category, including the 1967 Neuchatel Observatory award for the most accurate chronometer ever presented, this legendary mechanical movement equipped maritime chronometers and pocket watches before enjoying a second lease on life in the wristwatches of the Pilot collection.
A number of original 5011K calibres found in the archives of the Manufacture, duly restored and decorated, now equip several Pilot Type 20 models – all issued in strictly limited editions – including this Hommage à Louis Blériot model. The transparent case-back thus reveals fascinating engraving work depicting Louis Blériot’s cross-Channel flight in 1909 aboard the Blériot XI plane, his trusty Zenith watch firmly on his wrist. Driving hours and minutes hands along with small seconds at 9 o’clock and a power-reserve indicator at 3 o’clock, Calibre 5011K operates at the rate of 18,000 vibrations per hour and enjoys 48 hours of autonomy.
– Zenith Pilot Type 20 Hommage à Louis Blériot
– engravings depicting Louis Blériot’s cross-channel journey
– meteorite dial
– legendary 5011 pocket-watch calibre, entirely hand-engraved
Calibre: 22“` (Diameter: 50 mm)
Thickness: 10.00 mm
Frequency: 18,000 Vph (2.5 Hz)
Power-reserve: min. 48 Hours
Hours and minutes in the centre
Small seconds at 9 o’clock
Power-reserve indication at 3 o’clock
CASE, DIAL & HANDS
Material: Sapphire with white gold bezel, lugs and crown
Diameter: 60 mm
Opening diameter: 47.00 mm
Thickness: 18.50 mm
Crystal: Domed sapphire crystal with anti-reflective treatment on both sides
Case-back: Transparent sapphire crystal
Water-resistance: 3 ATM
Hour-markers: Arabic numerals in SuperLuminova SLN C1
Hands: Rhodium-plated, faceted and coated with SuperLuminova SLN C1
STRAP & BUCKLE
Black alligator leather strap with protective rubber lining
White gold pin buckle
5-PIECE LIMITED EDITION