Baselworld 2018: Breitling Navitimer 1 Automatic 38 Watch

By Cody D. Smith

Breitling just introduced the Navitimer 1 Automatic 38. It’s a nearly earth-shattering move considering the image one usually manifests when they imagine what a Navitimer to be. This is something completely away from the usual expectations we might expect from Breitling, it has nothing more than three hands against its aviation rule. Having three hands isn’t the first time this has happened in the Navitimer line. In the 1950’s they created the Ref.66 which was a dress watch with three hands and date and it was branded with the Navitimer markings, although bearing no resemblance to the rest of the chronograph line that it took its name from. Interestingly enough, it has appeared again this year at Baselworld.


This one takes many lessons from its older counterparts. Despite having no chronograph function, it has a rotating aviation rule paired with beads of rice style bezel that is reminiscent of the early generations of the Navitimer 806. The case measures in at a mere 38mm, quite small for a Breitling, right? This is obviously intended to be a dress watch, yet has some design cues and a few quirks of things from the older catalogs of Breitling. It presents a sleek and refined case shape along with a clean dial that isn’t painful to stare at.


The Navtimer 1 Automatic 38 is powered by the Calibre 17, a COSC-certified movement operating at 4Hz with 40 hours of power reserve. You only get the hours, minutes, seconds, and date, but that’s completely fine considering the audience that this Navitimer is marketed to; those of us that want clean and simple designs in favor of busy looks. The movement is also housed behind a steel caseback.

In Closing

A bit of an oddball yet still accessible, the Navitimer 1 Automatic 38 offers something that is different from the rest of their line. Vintage inspiration is at the forefront here, as many pieces as demonstrating at Baselworld this year. The new Navitimer 1 Automatic 38 will come on an alligator strap with a steel pin buckle. Not a bad entrance into a new lineup for Breitling at all, let’s sees where it goes from here! For more info, visit Breitling online.