AVI-8 has just introduced a special capsule collection: the AVI-8 Hawker Hurricane Night Reaper Limited Editions, that pay homage to the legendary Squadron Leader Karel “Kut” Kuttelwascher and the remarkable history of the Royal Air Force’s famed No. 1 Squadron.
Renowned as one of the RAF’s most successful Czechoslovakian and top ace pilots during World War II, Squadron Leader Karel Kuttelwascher left an indelible mark on aviation history. He was known as “The Czech night hawk” with his exceptional achievements earning him fame and recognition around the world.
No. 1 Squadron, where Kuttelwascher served, was tasked with night intruder sorties in 1942 which demanded not only extraordinary flying skills but also exceptional navigation abilities, keen eyesight, and a hunter’s instinct, all in the most perilous of flying conditions. Adding to the challenge they faced on their missions, the pilots’ black-painted Hurricanes carried just 91 rounds of ammunition per gun, providing only nine seconds of firing time.
Kuttelwascher’s Hurricane was identified by its black paint, yellow scythe and a red “Night Reaper” banner. The black camouflage enhanced the aircraft’s elusiveness during night missions where short burst firing was the only option.
Kuttelwascher with his 18 confirmed air victories earned him numerous awards, including the Distinguished Flying Cross from his native Czechoslovakia and other Allied nations, and his unrivalled success in night missions led to the well-deserved nickname of “Night Reaper”.
The new AVI-8 Hawker Hurricane Night Reaper Limited Editions have been created as a testament to the bravery, innovation and enduring spirit of aviation and are a remarkable capsule collection within the AVI-8 Hawker Hurricane family of timepieces for any aviation watch enthusiast.
Each watch is coloured and camouflaged in a palette of deep black, reflecting the legendary Hurricane JX-E (serial BE581) flown by Kuttelwascher, and feature a muti-layered dial with printed indexes and Swiss Luminous hands. The 42mm stainless steel case is 11mm thick and has a mineral lens with anti-reflective coating and a 22mm wide genuine leather strap. There is a pull out crown on the Carey edition and a pull out conical crown with debossed roundel on the Clowes edition. Both editions have a stainless steel fixed bezel and are water resistant to 50 metres. The Carey edition is fitted with a Japan Quartz movement with dual time feature, while the Clowes edition has a Japan Automatic movement with 3 hands date.
The Classic Chronograph edition and the Carey Dual Time edition are a limited edition of 170 pieces each, while the Clowes edition is a limited edition of just 120 pieces. All editions come with a two year warranty and a very nice presentation box.
All of the new Hawker Hurricane Night Reaper Limited Editions will be available to buy at Avi-8.co.uk from Friday 26th January 2024, priced between £200 to £390.
Simon Burrell is Editor of Our Man On The Ground, a former member of The British Guild of Travel Writers and professional photographer.
Photographs courtesy of AVI-8 Timepieces