Breitling Reference Numbers

How to read a Breitling reference number

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    Explanation

    Breitling uses reference numbers to uniquely identify its models. Every model inside a production series gets the same reference number, meaning that its design, material, and movement type are exactly the same (aside from the dial color, sometime the hands, and of course the band).

    The serial number, in addition to the reference number, ensures that no 2 watches will bear the same numbers, even if they are physically identical.


    Reference and serial numbers on the case-back of a Breitling Navitimer

    Please note that over the years, Breitling had many different ways of choosing reference numbers. The memo displayed below applies to modern watches (from 1991 onwards), and may not be perfectly accurate.

    Scheme (since 1991)

    Examples of Breitling 6-digit reference numbers:

    First digit
    Case material(s):
    Breitling material codes
    LetterMaterial
    Astainless steel
    BSS with 18k yellow gold rider tabs
    CSS with 18k rose gold bezel
    DSS with 18k yellow gold bezel
    Etitanium
    Ftitanium with 18k yellow gold rider tabs)
    Hsolid rose gold
    Jsolid white gold
    Ksolid yellow gold
    Lplatinum
    M“black” steel
    Pstainless steel with platinum bezel
    Rsolid red gold
    V“black” titanium
    Wstainless steel with tungsten carbide bezel
    2nd+3rd digits
    Caliber number (50 and above means a quartz movement).
    Note that for the new in-house movements, a B is added right before the caliber number (e.g. B01). Otherwise, the movement base is sourced from an external supplier, and often modified to improve the chronometric performances or appearance, or add a complication. (The table below is heavily based on «Buffmen»'s list.)
    Breitling movements bases
    Non-manufacture caliber numberBase movement (and added complications, if applicable)
    10ETA 2892A2
    11Lemania 1873
    12Lemania 1873, with a 24-hour cycle
    13ETA 7750 Valjoux
    14ETA 2892A2, with a date/12-hour chronograph module; or ETA 2897
    15ETA 2892A2, with a GMT/day-night/calendar module
    17ETA 2824 / 2824-2
    18ETA 2892A2, with a 12-hour chronograph/moonphase/perpetual calendar module
    19ETA 2892A2, with a 12-hour chronograph/moonphase/4-year calendar module
    20ETA 7750 Valjoux, with second time zone complication
    21ETA 7751 Valjoux
    22ETA 2892A2, with flyback 12-hour chronograph module and a 24-hour cycle
    23ETA 7753 Valjoux
    24ETA 7754 Valjoux
    26ETA 2892A2, with a chronograph module (?)
    27ETA 2892A2, with a date/chronograph module with central minutes-seconds and combined minutes-seconds subdial
    30ETA 2892A2, with a date/12-hour chronograph module
    32ETA 2892A2, with GMT complication
    33ETA 2892A2, with 3-hour chronograph/date subdial module
    34Frédéric Piguet 1186
    35ETA 2892A2 (with a 3-hour flyback chronograph module
    36ETA 2892A2 (with a 10-minute timer, 3-hour chronograph module
    37ETA 2895-2
    38ETA 2892A2, with a 12-hour chronograph/4-year calendar module
    39ETA 2892A2, with a 24-hour indication/combined minutes-hours 12-hour chronograph module
    40ETA 2892A2, with a 3-hour chronograph module, no date
    41ETA 2892A2, with a 12-hour chronograph module
    42ETA 2892A2, with a 3-hour chronograph module
    43ETA 7758 Valjoux
    44ETA 2892A2, with a big date/12-hour chronograph module
    45ETA 2834-2
    47ETA 2892A2, with a date/GMT/6-hour chronograph module
    48ETA 7763 Valjoux
    49ETA 2896
    51Miyota Y652
    52ETA 956.112
    53ETA 251.262
    55Piguet MecaQuartz 1270
    56ETA 988.332
    57ETA 955.412
    58ETA 955.112
    59Miyota C3510
    61Ronda 732
    64ETA 955.612
    65ETA 998.332
    67ETA 956.612
    68ETA E20.331
    69Piguet MecaQuartz 1271
    72ETA Thermoline 956.152
    73ETA Thermoline 251.232
    74ETA Thermoline 955.652
    75ETA Thermoline 988.352
    76ETA Thermoline 988.352
    77ETA Thermoline 956.652
    78ETA Thermoline E20.341
    4th digit
    In the case of a non–in-house movement: 0 means that it is not COSC-certified; 3 means that it is. (But there are a few exceptions; for instance, a model of non–COSC-certified Astromat has a 4; a model of non-COSC Emergency has a 1.)
    5th+6th digits
    Short model number

    Important: for the in-house calibers B01, B02 etc., the caliber number is actually 3 digits (e.g. AB0131) and there is no information about COSC certification (that is not needed since they are all certified).

    The full reference number contains an additional series of numbers (and sometimes letters) to identify the type of bracelet.
    For instance, A13352-355 points to a stainless steel Chronomat with a Pilot bracelet.

    Some models have a .1 suffix to indicate that some improvement has been made over the previous model. This has notably been seen on 13050.1 Chronomats, 12023.1 Cosmonautes, but the nature of the enhancement has not been formally indicated (in this case, this may be the use of Super-LumiNova pigments).

    The Breitling reference numbers search engine is an ongoing effort. Its goal is to gather data about previous and existing Breitling models (including, but not limited to, price and date of production).