Breitling Co-Pilot Chronograph

Regular price
$11,250
Regular price
Sale price
$11,250
REF 7650
Manual-winding
42.5 MM
– Show less
SKU AS08626
Article Number 40940073
ref 7650
case size 42.5 MM
movement Manual-winding
approximate age 1960s
dial color Black
material Stainless Steel
style Chronograph
category Vintage
bracelet Metal
lug width 22 MM
Includes Stainless steel flat-link bracelet with straight ends and signed blade clasp.
overall condition The case is in fantastic condition overall showing light signs of wear from gentle use with strong factory finishing. Matte black Tritium dial with recessed silver 'radial' subsidiary registers is in excellent condition showing even patination to luminous elements with matching white painted 'sword' handset. Signed crown. Bezel shows light wear and abrasion on red triangle at 12:00.
REF 7650
Manual-winding
42.5 MM
– Show less
SKU AS08626
Article Number 40940073
ref 7650
case size 42.5 MM
movement Manual-winding
approximate age 1960s
dial color Black
material Stainless Steel
style Chronograph
category Vintage
bracelet Metal
lug width 22 MM
Includes Stainless steel flat-link bracelet with straight ends and signed blade clasp.
overall condition The case is in fantastic condition overall showing light signs of wear from gentle use with strong factory finishing. Matte black Tritium dial with recessed silver 'radial' subsidiary registers is in excellent condition showing even patination to luminous elements with matching white painted 'sword' handset. Signed crown. Bezel shows light wear and abrasion on red triangle at 12:00.

Why We Love it

Like the Breguet Type 20, the Breitling Reference 765 or AVI was designed for helicopter pilots in the French army. 

Eager to secure the contract, in 1953 Breitling designed a watch that they thought would be perfect for the job. Unlike the Navitimer, the dial of the AVI displayed only the most essential information pilots needed — the requisite hours and minutes, indicated by large luminescent hands, and registers for running seconds, 12 hours, and 30 minutes. Unfortunately, the French military specification — Type 20 —required a flyback function, which the AVI lacked.

Not to be deterred, Breitling adapted it for civilian use, and in 1964 it debuted as the Co-Pilot. This watch was worn to perfection by Raquel Welch in the 1967 film Fathom, in which an Italian skydiver (played by Welch as the title character) finds herself embroiled in international espionage. Breitling ads promoted the watch’s appearance on film, stating that either the watch or the woman “[Steals] the scenes, in film and real life.”

Though the Co-Pilot retained the diameter of its predecessor (a whopping 41mm, large for the period), it underwent some cosmetic changes that made it stand out amidst Breitling’s chronograph offerings: The rotating 12h steel bezel, previously steel, was now anodized aluminum. (The bezel was also released in other variants, like the ‘Double-Scale,’ which displayed scales for both 60 minutes and 12 hours. The ‘Double-Scale’ bezel found its way to a cousin of the Co-Pilot, the 765 Yachting.)

Additionally, the dial — previously black-on-black — was given a distinctive black-and-white colorway now known as ‘reverse panda’ by collectors.The new variant of Co-Pilot with the white chronograph registers found its way on the wrist of someone less glamorous (but no less exciting) than Raquel Welch — Jean-Claude Killy.

Though best associated with the Rolex Dato-Compax that now bears his name in collecting circles, Killy also sported a Reference 765 Co-Pilot before pledging himself to the Crown as a brand ambassador. Most notably, he wore the Co-Pilot during the 1968 Winter Olympics in Grenoble, France, where he won gold medals in downhill, giant slalom, and slalom — the “Triple Crown” of alpine skiing — thus securing his legacy.

This particular Co-Pilot, a Reference 7650, dates to circa 1969 and comes in with a 42.5mm stainless steel case with dual barrel pushers, a signed crown, and a bidirecitonal rotating black aluminum bezel with a 12-hour markers. It features a matte black Tritium 'reverse panda' dial with recessed, silver sub registers, a an outer white minute track, and a matching white painted 'sword' handset.

Powered by a Venus Calibre 178 manual winding chronograph movement, this piece comes fitted to an extremely cool, period flat-link stainless steel bracelet with a signed blade clasp.

Whether plunging toward Earth from a De Havilland DH-89A like Welch in Fathom, slaloming down the slopes in the French Alps a la Killy, or are a seasoned Breitling collector, this piece makes for a great option!

While these are not exactly scarce, finding one in excellent overall condition such as this is always a treat.

Brand Story

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Breitling, one of the most illustrious names in the annals of the “tool watch,” was founded by Léon Breitling in 1892. And though the firm is no longer operated by its namesake family, it still produces some of the world’s best pilot’s watches, many of which now feature in-house movements.

The company first started manufacturing wrist chronographs as early as the 1930s. In 1936 they became an official supplier to military forces of the United Kingdom and Canada. While perhaps best known for the Navitimer and Chronomat lines — which were used heavily by pilots of many nations — Breitling also produced scores of other chronograph models that merit consideration, such as the more affordable Top Time and Premier. Dive watches, such as the Super Ocean, are also part of the company’s offerings.

The late 1970s was a turbulent time for the Swiss watch industry, and many storied houses were swept away by the Quartz Crisis. By 1978, Breitling was in trouble due to the illness of its leader, Willy Breitling, and the steep decline in sales that had cut through the entire industry. Unable to keep operations going, the company was liquidated, and parts, toolings and naming rights were sold off.
Between 1979 and 2017, Breitling continued under the ownership of the Schneider family. In 2017 an 80% stake in the firm was sold to a British private equity firm, with the remaining 20% sold in 2018. In 2019, the company released the caliber B01, an in-house, automatic chronograph movement that’s since found its way into the Chronomat and Navitimer collections, bringing the tale of this famed manufacturer full circle.

A:S Guarantee

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Our Pledge

Analog:Shift stands behind the authenticity of our products in perpetuity.

Condition

Since our pieces are vintage or pre-owned, please expect wear & patina from usage and age. Please read each item description and examine all product images.

Warranty

We back each Analog:Shift vintage timepiece with a one-year mechanical warranty from the date of purchase.

International Buyers

Please contact us prior to purchase for additional details on shipping and payment options.

Shipping & Returns

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All of our watches include complementary insured shipping within the 50 states.

Most of our products are on hand and will ship directly from our headquarters in New York City. In some cases, watches will be shipped directly from one of our authorized partners.

We generally ship our products via FedEx, fully insured, within 5 business days of purchase. An adult signature is required for receipt of all packages for insurance purposes. Expedited shipping is available at an additional cost. We are also happy to hand deliver your purchase in Manhattan or you may pick it up at our showroom.

Returns must be sent overnight or by priority international delivery, fully insured and paid for by the customer. A restocking fee may apply. Watches must be returned in the same condition as initially shipped.

We welcome international buyers, please contact us prior to purchase for additional details on shipping and payment options.

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Breitling Co-Pilot Chronograph

Breitling Co-Pilot Chronograph

Regular price
$11,250
Regular price
Sale price
$11,250
Breitling Co-Pilot Chronograph

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