A very rare, oversized and attractive stainless steel chronograph wristwatch made for the Italian Air Force

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  • Condition Report

  • Manufacturer: Zenith
    Year: Circa 1970
    Case No: 201’228 (Registration Number) Caseback further engraved “A.M.I Cronometro Tipo CP-2 M.M.
    Model Name: A.M.I. Cronometro Tipo CP-2 M.M.
    Material: Stainless steel
    Calibre: Manual, cal. 146DP, 17 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Leather
    Clasp/Buckle: Stainless steel pin buckle
    Dimensions: 43mm Diameter
    Signed: Case and dial signed, dial further signed A. Cairelli Roma
    Accessories: Accompanied by Zenith Extract from the Registers and a copy of Start Stop Reset 88 Epic Stainless Steel Chronographs book
    Provenance: Phillips, Geneva 14 May 2016, Start Stop Reset 88 Epic Stainless Steel Chronographs, lot 13.

  • Provenance

    Phillips, Geneva 14 May 2016, Start Stop Reset 88 Epic Stainless Steel Chronographs, lot 13.

  • Catalogue Essay

    Considering that the present Zenith Tipo CP-2 is a military issued timepiece we can only be impressed by its amazing condition.

    With its large 43mm. case size, black dial with large Arabic numerals and military background, not to mention its overall good looks, the Zenith "A. Cairelli" Tipo CP-2 (Cronometro da Polsa Tipo 2 meaning wristwatch type 2) has become a highly coveted chronograph.

    From the 1960s to 1970s the Italian Air Force, the Aeronautica Militare Italiana (AMI) commissioned Zenith to make a special wristwatch for its members. It is believed that approximately 2,500 examples were made.

    The Tipo CP-2 were all supplied through A. Cairelli, the prominent Roman retailer of watches, clocks, and mechanical instruments. Designed for AMI’s pilots for mission use, many were not issued due to an abrupt cancellation by the AMI. A. Cairelli sold the remaining stock – all without military issue numbers on their casebacks – privately to civilians.

    The present watch is therefore a rare military-issued version, illustrated by the engraving on this caseback, reading “AMI CRONOMETRO TIPO CP-2 MM 201'228”.

    Housing a high grade, hand-wound movement – the caliber 146, this historically significant chronograph remains in excellent overall condition. Combined with its masculine presence, military provenance, and eye-catching dial, it’s a superb timepiece for any vintage watch enthusiast.

    In 2016 Zenith reissued a limited edition Cronometro Tipo CP 2 as a tribute to the present watch.

  • Maker Bio

    Zenith

    Swiss • 1865

    Since Zenith's beginnings, founder George Favre-Jacot sought to manufacture precision timepieces, realizing quality control was best maintained when production was housed under one roof. Zenith remains one of the few Swiss manufacturers to produce their own in-house movements to this day.



    Today, the brand is best known for the "El Primero," the firm's most successful automatic chronograph movement. In an interesting twist of fate, the company that owned Zenith during the 1970s decided to move on to quartz movements and therefore sought to destroy the parts and tools necessary to make mechanical movements. One watchmaker realized this folly and hid the tools and parts before they were destroyed. In 1984, he returned them to Zenith so they could once again make the El Primero movement.

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Zenith

A very rare, oversized and attractive stainless steel chronograph wristwatch made for the Italian Air Force

Circa 1970
43mm Diameter
Case and dial signed, dial further signed A. Cairelli Roma

Estimate
CHF12,000 - 24,000 
€11,000-22,000
$12,100-24,100

Place Advance Bid
Contact Specialist
Virginie Liatard-Roessli
Specialist, Head of Sale
+41 76 338 91 03
vliatard@phillips.com

Double Signed: A Celebration of the Finest Partnerships Between Manufacturers and Retailers

Geneva Auction 9 November 2019