Next time you buy a Breitling watch it’s very likely that it will have some of the materials used in Norton Motorcycles’ legendary high-performance bikes.
Breitling has announced a partnership with the English motorcycle producer Norton Motorcycles that will lead to the creation of some unique common products or features. They will be inspired by the brands’ compelling and intriguingly similar historic timelines, and will even include some of the materials used in Norton Motorcycles’ legendary high-performance bikes.
The new watches will incorporate DNA elements from both brands, offering wristwatch and motorcycle fans a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to express their individuality by flying – at once – the colours of an emphatically Swiss watchmaker and the ultimate “British-made” motorcycle manufacturer.
Brands with a strong heritage, both Breitling and Norton Motorcycles, founded in the nineteenth century by visionaries who gave their names to their companies and, to a large extent, defined their industries. When James Lansdowne Norton founded his company – a manufacturer of “fittings and parts for the two-wheel trade” – in 1898 and produced his first motorcycles in 1902, Léon Breitling had already been making watches in the Swiss Jura mountains for more than a decade.
While Breitling is renowned for its strong link with aviation and its pioneering role in the development of chronographs Norton Motorcycles has long been regarded as the British motorcycle manufacturer, and its bikes have distinguished themselves both on and off the racetrack.
“Both companies are innovative and entrepreneurial and have powerful legacies. At the same time, we are looking ahead toward what we at Breitling call ‘our legendary future,” says Georges Kern, Breitling’s CEO.
Stuart Garner, who bought Norton Motorcycles in 2008 and has driven its extraordinary revival, agrees, saying, “We haven’t tried to change the nature of our brands or deny their histories. In fact, we revel in those histories and take inspiration from them while focusing on the future.”