Breitling Co-Pilot*** 7660 Yachting*** 1969
BREITLING Co-Pilot AVI Ref. 7660 Yachting Chronograph, Extremely Rare Museum Condition
Serial # 1275XXX
Circa: 1969

Extremely rare Breilting Co-Pilot AVI Yachting Chronograph in mint condition, comes with a letter from the Breitling Museum

Venus Caliber 178, Hand-hound mechanical column-wheel chronograph in perfect working condition, 17 jewels. Serviced and guaranteed by Breitling.

Black dial with pristine green Tritium luminous markers, white counters minutes counter at 3 o’clock, hours counter at 6 o’clock, and subsidiary counter at 9 o’clock. Bright orange chrono seconds hand and hour/minutes with orange tips and luminous center. BREITLING GENEVE and SWISS MADE T stamped on the dial.

43mm round, stainless steel, Bi-directional bezel with regatta timing indications in red white and blue, Glass in acrylic

STRAP: Not Specified

Breitling Watch Ltd

Very few examples of the extremely rare Breitling AVI have been seen worldwide with the reference 7660. These models were designed exclusively for the French air force (l’armée de l’air frainçaise).
The AVI's and Co-Pilot's are rarer than the equivalent Navitimers and these models were originally more expensive than Navitimers of the same period. In the mid-sixties the name was changed from AVI to Co-Pilot, but both are still commonly used together.
The Venus 178 caliber in this model was also used by some of its predecessors like the Navitimer, Top Time and the earlier Co-Pilot or AVI models.
The Venus factory was established in 1924, but filed its first chronograph patent 1933. By then it was part of Ebauche SA holding company with rival brands Valjoux, Lemania and Landeron as the four designated chronograph manufacturers in the Swiss watchmaking cartel. Venus made chronographs for scores of now forgotten brands, but its biggest customer was Breitling. Most of the Premier and Navitimer models from the 1940s to the 1960s were fitted with calibre 175 and 178 movements. Heuer and Patek Philippe favored the Valjoux movements and Lémania was Omega’s supplier.
The best-known Venus chronographs include the calibre 175, introduced in 1940, and its derivative, the 178 with hours counter. By the sixties, the chronograph boom had definitely had its day, and Venus closed its doors in 1966. Its assets were absorbed by
Valjoux, which discontinued column-wheel production and concentrated on the Venus cam movement instead. Chronograph development was then dormant for decades following
The letter that accompanies this watch is from the Breitling Museum in Grenchen stating that it is interested in acquiring this piece for its archives also speaks to the rarity of the watch itself and the value of owning it in a private collection.