Breitling Superocean Heritage: Honoring Tradition
The Breitling Superocean Heritage is a sporty, classic diving watch reminiscent of the Swiss manufacturer's first Superocean from the 1950s. The Heritage collection offers both three-hand models and chronographs.
Paying Homage to Breitling's First Diving Watch
The Superocean Heritage has been part of the Breitling catalog since 2007. The Swiss luxury watch manufacturer created this series to celebrate the 50th anniversary of their first diving watch collection. While the new model's design shares many features with the original, the Heritage isn't a remake of the vintage Superocean. Instead, it's a reinterpretation that is both retro and timeless. Perhaps the most noticeable design choice is the hands. Like the watch from 1957, the hour hand has a large arrow tip, while the minute hand is sword-shaped.
The collection includes both three-hand watches and chronographs. Most models come in stainless steel, though the manufacturer has also produced several boutique editions in 18-karat rose gold or with a bronze bezel. Initially, Breitling only offered the Superocean Heritage with a 38-mm case – the same size as the original. Since then, the Grenchen-based company has added versions with more contemporary 42, 44, and 46-mm cases.
The Superocean Heritage is water-resistant to 200 m (20 bar, 656 ft) and features a unidirectional bezel and screw-down crown. One exception is the Superocean Heritage '57. This model is true to the original, with its concave bidirectional bezel and 100 m (10 bar, 328 ft) of water resistance.
Reasons to Buy a Breitling Superocean Heritage
- In-house and ETA calibers with chronometer certification
- Water-resistant to 200 m (20 bar, 656 ft)
- Timeless retro design
- Three-hand watches and chronographs
- Case sizes ranging from 38 to 46 mm
Prices at a Glance: Breitling Superocean Heritage
|Model, reference number||Price (approx.)||Caliber, size, material|
|Heritage Chronoworks, SB0161E4/BE91-256S||31,000 USD||B02, 46 mm, ceramic|
|Heritage '57 Limited Edition, A103701A1B1A1||8,400 USD||B10, 42 mm, stainless steel|
|Heritage B01 Chronograph 44, AB0162161C1A1||6,600 USD||B01, 44 mm, stainless steel|
|Heritage Chronograph, A13313121L1A1||6,000 USD||B13, 44 mm, stainless steel|
|Heritage II B20 Automatic, UB2030121B1A1||5,500 USD||B20, 44 mm, stainless steel, rose gold|
|Heritage Chronograph, A23370||5,000 USD||B23, 44 mm, stainless steel|
|Heritage '57 Outerknown, U103701A1Q1W1||4,800 USD||B10, 42 mm, stainless steel, rose gold|
|Heritage II B20 Automatic, AB2020121L1S1||4,700 USD||B20, 46 mm, stainless steel|
|Heritage '57, A10370121B1A1||4,300 USD||B10, 42 mm, stainless steel|
|Heritage II B20, AB2020161C1S1||4,100 USD||B20, 46 mm, stainless steel|
|Heritage 42, A1732124/BA61||3,300 USD||B17, 42 mm, stainless steel|
|Heritage 46, A17320||2,900 USD||B17, 46 mm, stainless steel|
|Heritage, A37320||2,800 USD||B37, 38 mm, stainless steel|
How much does a Superocean Heritage cost?
You can purchase a first-generation Superocean Heritage with three hands for as little as 2,900 USD on Chrono24. More recent editions like the Superocean Heritage II 42 with the in-house caliber B20 cost roughly 4,100 USD. Expect to pay significantly more for a two-tone model or the retro Heritage '57, both of which demand an investment of around 4,800 USD.
Prices for chronographs in the collection range from 5,000 USD for older models with the Valjoux 7750 to around 6,600 USD for versions with the in-house caliber B01.
First-Generation Superocean Heritage Models
Even if its retro look may suggest otherwise, the Superocean Heritage is actually a young collection. In fact, it's been less than 15 years since it entered Breitling's catalog. Despite this, there are plenty of models to choose from. For example, if you prefer smaller watches, you'll likely enjoy the Heritage 38. As its name suggests, this watch has a 38-mm case, making it perfect for all wrist sizes. The caliber B37 is based on the ETA 2895-2 and gives the watch its date display at 3 o'clock and small seconds at 6. The dial is available in black, blue, brown, orange, or white. You can also choose between models on a Milanese steel bracelet or rubber strap. While the watch is no longer part of Breitling's current catalog, you can find unworn models on Chrono24 for between 2,400 and 2,800 USD.
If you're looking for a more substantial watch, you may want to check out the Heritage 42 or 46. At 42 and 46 mm respectively, they're much larger than other editions, but you will have to make do without a small seconds. These larger timepieces come with the same color options as the 38-mm edition, as well as variants that combine a white dial with a black bezel or a black dial with a green bezel. Depending on its condition, plan to spend between 3,100 and 3,500 USD for a Heritage 42. The 46-mm variant will set you back anywhere between 2,300 and 3,500 USD. Like the Heritage 38, neither model is part of Breitling's current catalog.
The Superocean Heritage II
In 2017, Breitling released a revamped version of this retro diving watch: the Superocean Heritage II. The design of the three-hand classic remained more or less unchanged from that of its predecessor, but for the introduction of a high-tech ceramic bezel insert. The real updates took place inside the watch, which is now powered by the caliber B20, based on the Tudor caliber MT 5612. Plan to spend around 4,100 USD for a 42-mm Heritage II in stainless steel. The two-tone version with a rose gold bezel will set you back approximately 5,200 USD. The 46-mm model demands an investment of 4,400 to 5,500 USD, depending on the edition.
Breitling also offers a 44-mm version of the Heritage II. Other than its dimensions, the watch is identical to the other models in the collection. A stainless steel Heritage II 44 will set you back about 4,000 USD in mint condition. Again, Breitling also produces a two-tone version that sells for around 5,500 USD.
Breitling introduced a new version of the Superocean Heritage II in 2022. The watch features a green sunburst dial, but is otherwise identical to its three-hand sibling models. In mint condition, the watch changes hands on Chrono24 for close to 4,700 USD.
Especially Retro: The Superocean Heritage '57
The Breitling Superocean Heritage '57 debuted in 2020, and is a faithful recreation of the original Superocean from 1957. Perhaps the most notable feature the new watch shares with its historical predecessor is its concave bidirectional bezel, which slopes inward toward the crystal. The dial design is yet another holdover from the original Superocean and features conical indices atop circles at 3, 6, 9, and 12 o'clock. The Heritage '57 doesn't have a date display, and is powered by the caliber B10. This movement is based on the ETA caliber 2892-A2 and, like all watches in the line, is chronometer-certified by the COSC.
The Superocean Heritage '57 belongs to the wider Capsule collection. Breitling uses this collection for models they plan to produce for a limited period of time. Thus, unlike the other Heritage models, the production of the Heritage '57 will eventually come to an end. Until that day comes, the diving watch is still readily available with your choice of a black, blue, or brown sunburst dial, on either a brown leather strap or stainless steel Milanese bracelet.
The stainless steel version of this 42-mm diving watch changes hands on Chrono24 for roughly 4,300 USD. The variant with an 18-karat rose gold bezel will set you back about 5,000 USD.
The line is also home to some real collector's items, such as the Outerknown Limited Edition, which is limited to just 500 pieces and features a gold bezel and brown sunburst dial. The highlight of the watch, however, is its NATO strap made from 100% recycled nylon sourced from old fishing nets. Plan to shell out around 3,500 USD for one of these timepieces. Even rarer than the Outerknown is the Heritage Limited Edition, which is limited to only 250 pieces. The indices come in the colors of the rainbow, which makes the watch quite vivid compared to other models. You can own one of these rare pieces for around 8,400 USD.
The Heritage Chronograph
Both the Heritage and Heritage II are available with a stopwatch function. Older models come in diameters of 44 and 46 mm, and are easily identified by the arrangement of subdials. Smaller models have a bicompax dial with the minute counter at 3 o'clock and small seconds at 9. The date display is located at 6 o'clock. The watch is equipped with the caliber B23 (Valjoux 7753), which boasts a 42-hour power reserve.
The watch costs approximately 5,000 USD. Larger models are powered by the caliber B13, based on the Valjoux 7750. The hour and minute counters as well as small seconds are located at 6, 9, and 12 o'clock, respectively, and the date display can be found at 3. Prices for well-maintained watches start at roughly 3,800 USD.
When it debuted in 2017, the Heritage II collection only featured 46-mm chronographs. The Swiss manufacturer fitted these watches with the caliber B13 and offered them in blue, black, or brown. Be prepared to spend about 5,300 USD on one of these models. Shortly before Baselworld 2018, the watchmaker from Grenchen replaced the 46-mm watch with a 44-mm variant. The newer model is also powered by the caliber B13, though Breitling upgraded it to include a day display in addition to the date. Prices vary by edition and range from 5,000 to 6,500 USD.
Since 2022, the Heritage II chronograph has also been available with a green dial, just like the three-hand models. This edition demands an investment of around 6,000 USD.
The Superocean Heritage II Chronograph 44 is powered by the in-house caliber B01, which offers an impressive 70 hours of power reserve. The stop minutes and stop hours are located at 3 and 9 o'clock on the dial. The small seconds and date window can be found at 6 and between 4 and 5 o'clock, respectively.
If you want to call one of these watches your own, plan to spend about 6,900 USD. If you prefer something more exclusive, check out the Superocean Heritage Chronoworks, which was produced in a limited edition of 100 pieces. This 46-mm timepiece is also fitted with the in-house caliber B01, but comes with a case made of black, high-tech ceramic. This exclusive edition will set you back about 31,000 USD.
In-house Calibers From Breitling and Tudor
Breitling chose their in-house Breitling 01 caliber to power the Heritage II B01 Chronograph 44, which they introduced in 2018. It has a 70-hour power reserve and can measure time in increments of ¼ of a second. Another version, the B01C, was developed specifically for the limited-edition Superocean Chronoworks and boasts a remarkable 100-hour power reserve.
The caliber B20 also made its debut inside a Superocean Heritage II. It ticks at 28,800 vibrations per hour (vph) and has a 70-hour power reserve. This movement is based on Tudor's caliber MT 5612. In 2016, Breitling and the Rolex sister company came to an agreement that allowed Tudor to outfit their watches with Breitling chronograph calibers and, in return, permitted Breitling to use Tudor calibers.