Tuesday, 7 May 2013

Baselworld 2013: Hamilton Khaki Pilot Pioneer Auto Chrono

Inspired by the seventies 6BB chronographs Hamilton supplied to the RAF, the new  Khaki Pilot Pioneer Auto Chrono is a solid interpretation of the original.


In the seventies several companies, Hamilton and CWC amongst them, supplied chronographs to the British Royal Air Force (RAF), marked "6BB" on the back for the RAF (or "0552" for the Royal Navy). These were distinguished by the asymmetrical case, due to the crown and pusher guards on the right side of the case. 

The Hamilton Khaki Pilot Pioneer Auto Chrono retains this characteristic case styling, as well as much of the spirit of the original. Hamilton has had a string of nicely done vintage-inspired timepieces, including the Pan Europ and Khaki Navy Pioneer, and this is no different.

There are concessions to modernity of course. The case is 41 mm in diameter with a sapphire crystal, compared to the original's 39 mm. Equipped with the H-31 movement (actually a Valjoux 7750 with 60 hours power reserve), the Khaki Pilot Pioneer Auto Chrono is a two-counter chrono like the original, but it has an additional circular date window. Like with the Longines Heritage Military 1938 reissues, the date window is practical but incongruous with the vintage styling.


The Khaki Pilot Pioneer Auto Chrono is available with a black dial, which is most like the original, as well as a silverish version with ivory Luminova. Both are available on bracelets or matching canvas NATO-style straps. This will retail for US$1845.

- SJX