In 1902, Léon Breitling had already been making watches in the Swiss Jura Mountains for nearly two decades when James Lansdowne Norton produced his first motorcycle. Both brands went on to feature in James Bond films: 007 wore a Breitling Top Time in 1965’s Thunderball and a Norton Dominator SS had a supporting role in 2015’s Spectre.
These two historic brands have now formed a partnership, and to celebrate it, each has launched complementary special editions of their respective mechanical works of art. Breitling has launched the Premier B01 Chronograph 42 Norton Edition, while Norton has unveiled the Commando 961 Café Racer MKII Breitling Limited Edition.
“Breitling and Norton are both innovative and entrepreneurial and have powerful legacies. This new watch honours the great partnership between these two aspirational brands.”
Georges Kern, CEO, Breitling
“Breitling’s new Premier Norton Edition incorporates DNA elements from both brands, offering wristwatch and motorcycle fans the opportunity to express their individuality, and perfectly embodies the nature of our brands,” said Stuart Garner, CEO of Norton.
Breitling’s Premier Norton has a 42-millimetre stainless-steel case that is water-resistant to 10 bar or 100 meters. It is distinguished by a “Norton” logo engraved on a plate on the left side of the case, while the transparent caseback features a printed Norton motorcycle and logo.
The dial is elegant in black with contrasting golden numerals and hour and minute hands. The latter two are coated with Super-LumiNova to make them legible on any route or weather conditions. The contrast on the dial is also provided by the two silver subdials: a chronograph minute counter at 3 o’clock and a small seconds subdial at 9 o’clock. The outer circumference of the dial features a black tachymeter scale on a white inner bezel around the dial, with “TACHYMETER” inscribed in red. At the heart of this watch is the Breitling Manufacture Caliber 01 which delivers a power reserve of approximately 70 hours. Collectors have the luxury of choosing between a brown vintage raw-leather strap – designed to appeal to both watch enthusiasts and vintage motorcyclists – or a stylish stainless-steel bracelet.
Norton’s complimentary Limited-Edition Breitling Commando recalls the classic silhouette of the great café racers of old while offering modern state-of-the-art components and engineering, including the in-house developed 961 cc engine. Limited to just 77 motorcycles, the Breitling special is distinguished by a vintage Breitling “B” engraved on the clutch box, Breitling-designed speedometer and tachometer dials, and a black-on-black vintage “B” stitched into the saddle.
The Premier B01 Chronograph 42 Norton Edition is just the beginning of the special partnership between two extraordinary brands, we are told. This can only mean that further announcements can be expected.