Blancpain released a limited version of their vintage Blancpain Air Command Chronograph in 2019. That vintage model was quite a rarity in the watchmaking spectrum, in a world where their Fifty Fathoms was all the rage, and it still is. The 2019 reissue was well-received, introducing a new generation of watch aficionados to the Air Command. Then, last year, Blancpain released two new editions of Air Command in blue and in titanium/gold, both of which had the same 42.5mm proportions as the 2019 edition. Blancpain has now added two new editions of the Blancpain Air Command Flyback Chronograph to the line, albeit in a significantly smaller case profile of 36.2mm.
If you read our editorial of last year’s Air Command Flyback Chronograph, or if you own one, it will look exactly the same. That’s because barring the smaller size, it’s essentially the same watch. The Air Command, like the parent model, has a flyback chronograph and a countdown-style spinning bezel. The new Air Command Flyback Chronograph will appeal to both men and women with a case profile of 36.2mm x 11.50mm. This is true for men who prefer to wear smaller watches or have nothing against wearing smaller watches.
The case, with brushed surfaces and polished bevels, is available in two materials: grade 23 titanium or 18k red gold, with the same blue color on the dial and ceramic bezel as the previous iteration. The bi-compax sunray-brushed blue dial retains the layout of the counters and tachymeter scale, as well as the luminous hands and hour-markers, piston-type chronograph pushers, and glass box-type sapphire crystal. The hands match the case’s color, whether titanium or rose gold. The water resistance rating is 3 bar.
The calibre F188, an integrated automatic chronograph movement with a flyback function and a silicon balancing spring, governs the Blancpain Air Command Flyback Chronograph 36.2mm. Viewable through a sapphire crystal case-back, it beats at 3Hz with a power reserve of 40 hours. The column-wheel and vertical clutch provide smooth and precise stop/start operations and stutter-free operation of the chronograph seconds hand.
The Air Command comes on a blue calf leather strap with white stitching. It costs EUR 17,500 in titanium (ref. AC03-12B40-63) and EUR 28,920 in red gold (ref. AC03-36B40-63).
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