“WARNING: Use Only In Case of Real Emergency”. These words are engraved on the caseback of the new Breitling Emergency 2 ($15,000), and you’d better take heed. Pull out the antenna to impress your buddies at your backyard barbecue and two things will happen: (1) a helicopter will land on your patio, and (2) you’ll pay an unpleasant fine for setting off a false search and rescue mission.
We can’t think of another “tool” watch that lives up to that name so well. In fact, to call the Emergency 2 a watch is to only tell half the story; it is actually classified as a Personal Locator Beacon (PLB) that just happens to have a thermocompensated, chronometer-certifed SuperQuartz movement that tells the time within an accuracy range of 10 seconds per year. While the PLB transmits SOS signals to the land- and sea-based 121.5MHz frequency (that one’s been around for a while), it also adds a more powerful 406MHz transmitter that alerts the network of COSPAS-SARSAT satellites circling the earth of your location (that one hasn’t been around so long). In other words, Breitling’s got you covered.
It also costs $15,000 and is 51 millimeters in diameter. Not many weekend warriors will be strapping it on — this big Breitling is for the guy who climbs Denali as a way to wind down from a solo circumnavigation. While other watches make a lot of claims, this one can actually save your life. Case closed. We break it down for you above.