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We've heard them referred to as "Heuer's Submariner" - not because they make for good diving watches (they don't), but because their design is just as timeless, and their functionality as a racing chronograph parallels that of the Rolex for timing dives.
The name "Autavia" comes from a combination of two words: Automotive & Aviation. Heuer originally applied the moniker to dashboard clocks and instrumentation used in automobiles and aircraft, but recycled it in the 1960s and applied it to their line of professional racing chronographs for which the name is best known.
Values for early Heuer chronographs (particularly manually-winding screw back Autavia models) are on the rise, and good examples are getting hard to come by. This most desirable models, the iconic Reference 2446, features a triple register dial layout and outer rotating 60-Minute bezel. Made famous by legendary Formula I driver Jochen Rindt, third execution models have recently become incredibly popular with collectors, despite the fact that we've been hearing more about his wife as of late...
This particular example has tons of character, featuring a strong case with defined original beveling, and a strong untouched dial with just the right amount of patina. Its outer bezel shows wear consistent with a life of proper use, rounding out a truly beautiful vintage look. As is common on other examples from this era, the serial number is partially obscured, making pinning down an exact year of production a fool's errand, but we have no reason to suspect tomfoolery, but is priced accordingly.
With its tremendous looks, brilliant patina, and robust Valjoux 72 internals, it would be a tall order to find a vintage timepiece - any vintage timepiece - that is more perfectly suited for a vintage motorsports enthusiast.
Stainless Steel case is approximately 38mm at the bezel (excluding crown). Heuer Reference 2446. Valjoux 72 manually-winding chronograph movement. Circa late 1960s.
Overall condition: The case is in very good condition throughout, with signs of wear consistent with age and use. Original beveling is still intact and has not been removed by excessive polishing, and the lug ends remain sharp. The reverse panda dial is in excellent condition, devoid of any glaring marks. Luminescent hour plots show light even patination. Original luminous stick hands hands are in excellent condition with matching patination. Screw case back shows no signs of polish, and engravings are deep. Barrel pushers andsigned crown.
Includes a 20mm black leather Racing Strap by Autodromo.