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The late 1960s, early 1970s were sort of like the Wild West, horologically speaking. Brands were leaving their traditional beats, experimenting with new designs and complications. 70s fashion had injected itself into the market place, making room for bright colors and large cushion cases, allowing for fresh takes on well-worn watches.
Just about every Swiss manufacture pulled out the stops during the 70s, making watches from this era some of the most interesting vintage pieces out there today. It was also a time that saw parts suppliers - think EPSA, J.B. Champion, Gay Freres, NSA, Singer, etc. - becoming sought after components themselves. While these producers were always part of the production process, their names became more noticeable to consumers. Today, watches with these outsourced components can be highly desirable and strongly valued.
Sadly, with the 1970s also came quartz, the expansion of which put the kibosh on the a good portion of the Swiss watch industry - smaller manufactures that couldn't compete were swept away or absorbed by larger manufactures.
While Girard-Perregaux was never forced to close their doors, the production of their mechanical timepieces was significantly affected by the advent of quartz. Interestingly, the brand produced their first quartz watch in 1970, a feat that would become a harbinger of the next few decades of the manufacture's focus.
Ultimately, GP produced a fair number of quartz watches, setting industry standards along the way. But the shift in focus came an abrupt downfall in the production of commercial mechanical watches, to the chagrin of many collectors today.
This piece dates to this period, suggesting that it was either one of the few GPs to be made alongside the quartz production or one of the last few models to be made before the shift occurred. With its navy-blue dial with white, silver and sky blue sub-registers and fixed internal tachymetre bezel, the watch oozes cool, and the hefty (42mm) stainless case with radial brushing wears incredibly well on the modern wrist. Inside, the Valjoux 23 movement is clean and crisp, running at an amazing +/- 5 seconds/day.
The pièce de résistance is the J.B. Champion steel link bracelet with GP-signed clasp - a true rarity in and of itself.
For a great 70s chrono, look no further!
Stainless Steel case is approximately 42mm (excluding crown and pushers).
Overall Condition: The watch is in excellent condition throughout, with only the slightest marks from wear. Original radial brushing is light but still present. Original dial is in excellent condition, as are the original hands. Original case back, GP-signed crown and pushers.
Includes J.B. Champion steel link bracelet with Girard-Perregaux-signed clasp and 20mm two nylon straps by Crown & Buckle.