Everybody goes nuts for vintage Patek Philippe and Rolex watches! There are some rare exceptions from other brands that are also quite sought after. In the last couple of years the Zenith TIPO CP-2 from the 1960’s has become a fine example of this.
To give you some insight. In the late 1950s, the Italian armed forces wished to renew the Tipo CP1 chronographs that were standard equipment for pilots of the Aeronautica Militare Italiana and the Marina Militare. The technical specifications called for a model delivering perfect legibility; a 43 mm case that could be worn over pilots’ flight suits; immediate and secure access to the pushers and bezel; and of course a reliability worthy of the most accurate chronometers. Hand-wound Zenith Calibre 146 DP was one of the most renowned and most reliable movements available at the time. The chronograph christened TIPO CP-2 by the Italian Air Force was delivered by A. Cairelli, the Manufacture’s Rome-based distributor. Worn by the pilots of the famous American Lockheed F104 Starfighter, these timepieces became an important extension of the onboard instruments installed in the cockpit. Pilots became attached to them to the point of wearing them at all times, even when not on official duty.
To celebrate this historic an iconic timepiece, Zenith has released the NEW Heritage Revival Cronometro Tipo CP-2. This watch respects the details of the original version combined with the best that modern construction has to offer. Zenith has manufactured only 1,000 pieces for the world.
You can never replicate the character of the original version . This can only be achieved by wearing and using the watch over many years. With that being said it’s an amazing example of a revival piece.
When you compare the original from the sixties and the new version they look very similar. The cases are 43mm and almost identical. The dials are slightly different. The Zenith Star located under the numeral 12 on the original is printed. On the newer version the star is hand applied. On thief vintage version “A. Cairelli” is printed above the six o’clock position in the middle of the dial between the numeral 8 &4. On the NEW version “Automatic” is written instead. I also love that Zenith didn’t try to ruin it by adding a date. For a chronograph is super clean, bold and legible.
The movement on the original version was a hand wound mechanical movement . This makes sense because the automatic self winding chronograph movement wasn’t developed till the late sixties. The NEW version has the in house El Primero 4069 automatic column wheel chronograph movement with 50 hour power reserve.
This NEW version is a great masculine tool watch that bridges the gap between the Pilot’s series and there more sophisticated watches. It’ a true classic for anyone who wants something in house, well made, limited at the amazing price point of $7,700!