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First producer for Porsche Design watches
The Pilot Watch Magazine
14 May 2024

Durable and robust wristwatches for aviation and military

Orfina is a fine watch manufacturer founded in 1922 by the Ruefli family of entrepreneurs and based in Grenchen. Now run by the Swiss Schifferle family, the family business specializes in the manufacture of exclusive and high-quality Swiss wristwatches. The timepieces of the small manufacture are very robust and suitable for extreme use. The portfolio includes, among others, models for the fire department, for the rescue service, for the military, but of course also for pilots.

Watches from Orfina are produced in limited small series and enjoy great popularity among everyday users, as well as professionals and collectors. The watchmaker comes to international fame in the early 1970s after being the first manufacturer ever to win the contract to build the unique Porsche Design watches – true sports car feeling for the wrist. Incidentally, the first Porsche Design watch is designed by Ferdinand Alexander Porsche, designer of the celebrated Porsche 911.

From the very beginning, Orfina focuses on making durable and robust wristwatches for aviation and military.


Orfina and Tom Cruise

The first timepiece developed by Porsche Design and Orfina is launched in 1972. It is clearly distinguished from other chronograph wristwatches, especially by the strap and case made of matte black chrome-plated steel. The unusual watch is initially intended as an elegant accessory for Porsche drivers. However, the timepiece achieved great fame as a pilot’s watch. In 1986, action star Tom Cruise wears the legendary Porsche Design Chronograph as LT Pete Maverick Mitchell in the famous blockbuster Top Gun. And how could it be otherwise, in the remake of the hit movie in 2022, a black Porsche Design Chronograph is once again on the wrist of Air Force fighter pilot Maverick.

Watch enthusiast Tom Cruise in Top Gun Maverick
Top Gun Maverick / Tom Cruise / Paramount Pictures
Paramount Pictures
Tom Cruise / Top Gun Maverick / Paramount Pictures

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