Breitling Premier Top Time Triumph
The Breitling Premier Top Time Triumph, Breitling’s entry into the popular steel-sports-watch-with-ice-blue-dial trend, is a top contender for two reasons. First, you can get it, compared to other entries by, say, Rolex or Patek Philippe. Secondly, it’s priced right, at $5,500, or $5,700 for the limited edition. Aside from that, it has an in-house chronograph movement, a unique design, and there is a cool ice-blue Triumph motorcycle to go with it.
Breitling’s Top Time line is distinctive for its bi-compax, subdial configuration, nicknamed the “Zorro” by collectors because of its resemblance to the famous swordsman’s half-face mask. The Breitling Premier Top Time Triumph collection is dedicated to vintage autos and motorcycles, with previous models named for the Ford Mustang, the Chevrolet Corvette and the Shelby Cobra. This one is an homage to Triumph motorcycles, and there will be a limited edition of 270 co-branded motorcycles – the Speed Twin Breitling Premier Top Time Triumph Limited Edition – whose buyers will have the opportunity to buy a special owner’s version of the Breitling Top Time Triumph. A sunray dial and an engraved caseback featuring the individual number of the bike will differentiate it from the regular edition.
The watch was also inspired by something called cafe-racer culture. In the mid-1960s, a subculture sprang up around “cafe racers,” stylish motorcycles that were used to transport their riders from one hip cafe to another. Brand founder Willy Breitling introduced the Top Time as an homage to the culture, with an unconventional chronograph designed for young and active professionals. The unique color of the new model’s dial has two references: a blue Triumph Thunderbird 6T from 1951 and a rare, blue-dialed Breitling Premier Top Time Triumph, Ref. 815, from the 1970s.
The Breitling and Triumph logos share the dial, one at 12 o’clock and the other at 6, and the casebacks are etched with a detailed design sketch of Triumph’s parallel twin engine. Oversized mushroom pushers are vintage-y looking, and allow for easy control of the chronograph stop-start-reset functions. It contains the Breitling caliber 23 with a 48-hour power reserve, and comes on a black racing-themed (perforated) leather strap.