A few months ago, Hamilton let us get our hands on a unique new watch, unlike anything we’d seen before. That watch – the Khaki Takeoff Auto Chrono Limited Edition – made its official debut this week at Baselworld. Now, we’re excited to be able to share with you some photos we took when we first got to go hands-on a few months ago.
The Khaki Takeoff Auto Chrono Limited Edition is at once a watch and a clock – in both design and function. Hamilton’s designers drew broad inspiration for the watch from the famed Hamilton-Elgin 37500 elapsed time aircraft instrument panel clock, which kept time for US pilots flying the P4U Corsair over the South Pacific during WWII. The Khaki Takeoff’s 46.3mm case is black PVD-coated and features bullhead-style chronograph controls, with the start/stop and reset buttons sitting up top at 11:00 and 1:00 respectively.
The matte black dial displays large Superluminova hour numerals, a running seconds hand at 6:00, and a 30-minute chronograph hand at 12:00. The center chronograph seconds hand features an airplane-shaped tip whose bright yellow paint matches the 15-second countdown portion of the large, rotating chapter ring. The thick, knurled bezel rotates bi-directionally and allows adjustment of the chapter ring to aid in countdown timing.
For decades, vintage aircraft clocks have been repurposed as desktop clocks in wooden display cases, and the Khaki Takeoff continues its theme of aviation clock heritage in a similar way. By giving the watch a 45-degree turn to the left, the watch becomes unlocked detachable from its black leather strap and the lower portion of its case. The watch can then be removed from the strap and mounted in an aviation-themed presentation box provided with the watch. In the move from wrist to desk, the watch shows us its inner workings via a crystal display back. There, you’ll see the Hamilton H-31 automatic movement, whose 60-hour power reserve will keep this watch-now-clock running for days without winding.
Whether on the wrist or on the desk, the Hamilton Khaki Takeoff offers unique styling, quality chronograph functionality, and a constant reminder of the company’s aviation heritage.
The Khaki Takeoff Auto Chrono Limited Edition is limited to 1,999 individually numbered pieces, and will be for sale later this year for around $3295.
by Brandon Cripps
be sure to follow us on instagram for constant updates from BaselWorld 2014