Longines Spirit was developed to celebrate the glory days of aviation, when daring flyboys went on epic feats in the air. We initially featured the line in issue #59, when it debuted in 2020, with time-only and chronograph variants. This year’s narrative is progressing beautifully, with new problems and two more courageous explorers, Clyde Pangborn and Hugh Herndon Jr. In 1931, they conducted the world’s first nonstop trip from Japan to the United States.
Longines provided the American aviators with a unique cockpit clock with double hour and minute hands and two concentric 24-hour displays for their 41-hour flight over the Pacific Ocean. This method of denoting various time zones was invented in 1908 by a watchmaker for the Ottoman Empire (now Turkey), and it was adapted from the cockpit clock to fit onto the wrists of pilots who set out to transverse time zones.
In the present, it was only a matter of time until a GMT model took to the skies in the budding Spirit fleet. The new Spirit Zulu Time is named after the original Longines dual time zone watch, which sported the Z flag on its dial in 1925. “Zulu” or “Z” time, derived from the NATO phonetic alphabet, signifies universal time in military and navigational situations, sectors in which Longines has pioneered.
The Holy Spirit Longines’ century-old experience in tracking different time zones is updated with Zulu Time, which has a 24-hour hand and a bidirectional rotating bezel graded over 24 hours. Local time is separately modified, offering the watch “true GMT” certification. The time zone system is driven by an in-house automatic movement with a silicon balance spring, COSC chronometer certification, and 72 hours of power reserve – exceptional performance features represented in the five stars on the dial.
The Spirit Zulu Time has a 42mm stainless steel case, matte black, sandblasted anthracite, or sunray blue dials, and corresponding coloured ceramic bezel inserts. It accomplishes a current design while retaining its classic flyboy charm, making it far more fascinating than the myriad traditional tickers with bland vintage elements. If the stainless steel band gets too utilitarian, just swap it out for a brown, beige, or blue leather strap to brighten things up.