Say Breitling, and the mind of many people will immediately venture to a world of jet planes and aviation heroes. That is indeed where the brand made most of its legacy, but not all of it!
In 1957 Breitling introduced the very first Superocean. Although they weren’t the first major brand to launch a diving watch, the Superocean was the first with a water resistance up to 200 meters/660 feet, thanks to a monocoque case construction. In the decades following, the Superocean would earn its place in the Breiling line-up by gaining the trust of professional, sports and even military divers.
With the Superocean II Breitling has a modern diving watch in its collection, but given the brand’s history in this field, a more vintage outlook is also warranted, and for that, they have the Superocean Heritage II.
Available in a robust 46mm version, as well as a smaller 42mm version, these watches reflect back to the early days of the Superocean collection, now sixty years ago. Its classic look is evident from the rounded lugs, clean dial and sword- and arrow hands. Also notice the lack of crown guards, which was typical for early diving watches.
While the Superocean Heritage II may look vintage, it has a few modern aspects as well! The unidirectional bezel is crafted from scratch resistant ceramic, while inside the watch caliber B20 ticks. This movement originates from Tudor, where it powers, for example, the Black Bay steel. While some might have preferred a manufacture movement made by Breitling themselves, the move does make sense. Breitling has more a focus on chronographs, and since it is not part of a large watch-group, must be careful on how to utilize its resources. In return Breitling provides Tudor with their B01 Chronograph movement.
There is also very little to complain when it comes to the B20 automatic movement. It is Chronometer certified, comes with a power reserve of 70 hours and features a full bridge over the balance wheel, making it particularly robust. It is also an attractive movement, although you will have to take this for granted, as the watch is fitted with a closed case back.
Available in several dial colors, we found especially the blue and the brown varieties quite stunning. The brown because it is, in fact, a very warm color, and goes surprisingly well with the classic look of the Superocean Heritage II. Blue might be a more traditional choice, but Breitling gave the dial a velvet hue, which matches perfectly with the dial. Regarding strap and bracelets, there are several options available, from textured rubber and water resistant leather to a stainless steel mesh bracelet. Prices start at $4.075,-