Introducing the Hanhart Pioneer One Limited Edition, a Watch Inspired by the 417 ES Flyback Chronograph Worn by Steve McQueen

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German watch brand Hanhart has taken design cues from its vault and mixed them with a contemporary case size to develop the all-new Pioneer One Limited Edition. With only 150 pieces being made, the Pioneer One enters a competitive market of vintage-inspired pilot watches. This new mechanical piece—sized at 42mm across, 12mm thick, and 49.5mm lug-to-lug—boasts a number of stylish pilot watch cues that refer back to Hanhart’s history.

The stainless steel case is bead blasted, giving it an almost gunmetal finish in certain lights. The coin-edge bezel and large crown harken back to the watches worn by pilots during World War II. The hands and numbers are tipped in Super-LumiNova in “Light Old Radium” color. The matte black dial is a perfect backdrop for the vintage-inspired hands.

According to the manufacturer, Hanhart decided to revisit its 417 ES flyback chronograph series from the 1950s for inspiration. The 417 ES flyback chronograph was one of the watches famously worn by Steve McQueen, adding it to the list of several great watches worn by the Hollywood icon. While this is a three-hander (powered by a Sellita SW 200), there are a number of stylish details and design elements that make the Pioneer One Limited Edition a special watch.

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The inspiration.

Hanhart is known for their chronographs and mechanical timers. But it’s not until the release of the Pioneer One Limited Edition that the company offered a non-chronograph watch in Hanhart’s traditional style.

The red strip on the bezel and red-tipped second hand pop against their gray and black backgrounds, respectively. The seconds markings along the outside of the dial are a great touch that go back to Hanhart’s roots of supplying watches to the German Air Force. A splendid detail is the font used for the hour markings. It’s classic and bold, yet it isn’t overbearing. Everything sits behind a sapphire crystal.

Limited quantities are still available from the original 150 being produced. You can choose your own serial number when buying the watch. The Pioneer One Limited Edition is being priced at $1,170 by WatchBuys. The first pieces of this watch will arrive in late December 2017 with the remaining pieces in early 2018. WatchBuys

Christian discovered his love for watches around the same time he discovered he could make a living as a writer. An award-winning journalist, Christian has covered everything from presidential campaigns to princess tea parties. Now, he's combining his passion for vintage watches with his passion for writing. Christian lives and works out of central Pennsylvania.
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