Hanhart had couple of successful launches of the Pioneer One LE, one for German Watchlounge forum, and another for U.S. market sold via WatchBuys. Due to popularity of the watch, Hanhart then released the Pioneer One as a regular edition. The brand announced a new grey dial variation at MunichTime 2018. Our resident flieger expert, Mike Stuffler, was the first to buy it and give us his impression.
The design inspiration for Pioneer One came from the historical Hanhart 417 ES Flyback, which was originally produced for the Air Force of the German Federal Armed Forces in the 1950’s. The design of the hands and the numerals is based on this iconic model.
The Pioneer One has a satin-finished stainless-steel case, which measures 42mm in diameter, and has a height of 12mm. Lug width is 22mm. Until now the Pioneer One was available in either a black or a white dial. The addition of grey dial gives a nice modern flieger vibe to the watch.
Apart from the date display at 3 o’clock and the logo, the dial is very clean. The date wheel is black with white numerals. We understand that modern Hanhart has changed its logo, but we wish they would have kept that logo for Pioneer One (as they did for the Watchlounge edition).
Hanhart selected the same black hands from Pioneer One White dial, which complement the dial very well. The hour and minute hands are coated with Superluminova. The seconds hand has the signature red tip which breaks up the monochromatic look of the dial. The classic bi-directional fluted bezel has the historical red index marker. The crown is well proportioned (Oris labels it as big crown) and easy to operate.
The Pioneer One Grey is powered by a Sellita SW 200 automatic movement with a customized Hanhart rotor. You can see the rotor spinning through the display back. The front sapphire crystal has anti-reflective coating on the inside. The screwed-down case back is also fitted with a sapphire crystal with anti-reflective coating on the inside. The watch is water-resistant to 100 meters. The watch comes with a thick, riveted black leather strap.
Hanhart has always set its focus on accuracy, legibility, and functionality, and Pioneer One is not an exception to the rule. Fit and finish is excellent, dial and hands are well executed. Hanhart has succeeded in producing a nice modern flieger, inspired by their historical watch, for a reasonable price.
Hanhart is often overlooked when it comes to a basic three-hand flieger. We rate their watch as being on par with Laco, Stowa, or Tourby‘s pilot watches in the $1,000 range. Hanhart’s design differentiates itself from other traditional fliegers.
Pioneer One is available now and the price is 890 Euros, or approximately $1,070 USD (from Watchbuys). You can visit Hanhart website for more information.
Editorial: Mike Stuffler and Bhanu Chopra
Photo Credit: Mike Stuffler