Celebrating the 80th Anniversary of the third FAI International Tourist Plane Contest (also known as the Challenge International de Tourisme) that took place on August 1932 in Berlin, the Swiss watchmaker has presented the vintage-fashioned limited edition Oris Challenge International de Tourisme 1932 (ref. 01 733 7669 4084-Set LS). Featuring a classic notched bezel, a set of art-deco-styled Arabic numerals, and nicely shaped luminous hands, it looks cool and is also easily recognizable among hundreds of standard B-Uhr-style timekeepers.
Paying homage to the winners of the contest, a Polish team of airplane designers and aviators, the watch comes with its solid case-back cover engraved with a silhouette of the RWD 6 sports plane.
Well, in fact, there were two such planes that the Polish engineers brought to take part in the Challenge, but it was the SP-AHN 06 that got the highest prize (that’s why the central seconds hand has a winged “06” symbol on its counterweight). Unfortunately, both winners -pilot Franciszek Zwirko and mechanic Stanislaw Wigura- died just two weeks after the closing ceremony when their plane crashed during a storm.
Returning to the timepiece itself, I can help but notice that, unlike many “aviators”, this particular gadget comes in a well-proportionate body with elegantly shaped lugs and a slightly oversized winding crown that makes it especially easy to operate the device. The crown is a little too long and there is a risk that the part will bite you in the back of your palm from time to time.
As to the legibility, it looks absolutely flawless. The hour and minute hands are painted with light-green Superluminova and are of different shapes, which makes it especially easy to tell time even in darkness. A set of square-shaped hour markers make this task even easier.
Oris doesn’t make its own movements, but there is no problem with that: the caliber Sellita SW200 that powers the watch is well-known to qualified servicemen and is also relatively affordable, which makes it easier (and cheap) to service the timekeeper or repair it if something goes wrong.
According to the brand’s PR service, the watch will be issued as a limited edition model with only 1923 pieces being ever offered for sale. Each Oris Challenge International de Tourisme 1932 will be offered in a nice presentation box that will also include an engraved Zippo lighter that will somehow offset its fairly impressive price of $1850 USD.
Oris Challenge International de Tourisme 1932 (ref. 01 733 7669 4084-Set LS) specification
Price: $1850 (USD)
Movement: Automatic, caliber Sellita SW200, Swiss Made
Number of jewels: 26
Movement frequency: 28,800 vph
Power reserve: 38 hours
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, date
Case: Stainless steel
Size: 44.00 mm
Numerals: Arabic, applied
Hour markers: Luminous
Hands: Steel, luminous
Water resistance: 100 meters
Strap: Brown leather strap with contrast beige stitching
Crystal: Sapphire, antireflective
Back: Solid, engraved