Heuer launched the Camaro in 1968, just before its headline-grabbing automatic chronograph movement, the Chronomatic, was fitted into its other lines the following year. Last seen in the 1972 catalog, the Camaro lived very much in the shadow of its larger automatic siblings, and had one of the shortest production runs of all the models from the 60s and 70s, leading to their relative rarity today.
While the Camaro was produced in numerous configurations, many are drawn to the symmetry of the Reference 7743. With two sub registers--a running seconds at 9:00 and a 30-minute counter at 3:00--the 7743 is often seen as the most balanced of the Camaro offerings and feels reminiscent of gauges on a vintage dashboard.
The 7743N is driven by a Valjoux 7733 manually-wound chronograph unit, a true workhorse movement used extensively throughout the 1960s.
The dial of this particular version enjoys an even light fade, giving it a warm chocolate hue. The strong case with its fluted pushers still bears its iconic sunburst factory brushing. Despite a case measuring 37mm, the Camaro wears larger than the numbers might suggest as is typical with square and cushion case watches. The hand-cranking Valjoux movement lends itself to a thin case, allowing for a lower profile than the Calibre 11-driven chronographs of the 1970s.
In a sense, the Camaro is a blend of the early manually-wound Carreras and the later Monacos, with the combination of a square cushion case and straight lugs, evocative of a Monaco, and manual calibers and dials similar to Carreras. Larger than a Carrera but without the heft of a Monaco, the Camaro is as comfortable on the wrist as it is stylish. Simple executions such as this, devoid of of a printed tachymeter ring (in this execution), are particularly unusual finds, and prove that Heuer was just as capable at making stylish watches as they were at making world-class timing devices.
Stainless steel case is approximately 37mm (excluding crown and pushers). Heuer Reference 7743N. Valjoux Caliber 7733 Manually-Wound Chronograph Movement. Circa late 1960s.
Overall Condition: Stainless steel case is in very good condition, retaining factory sunburst finishing. Case does show signs of gentle polishing, particularly on the sides of case. Dial is in excellent condition, having gained a warm, tropical patination. Luminescent elements of the hours markers and hands have also developed a warm even patina. Heuer signed crown. Case back shows some light scratches, consistent with age.
Includes one 18mm chocolate brown leather strap and two 18mm nylon straps from Crown & Buckle