Wittnauer 245T GMT Chronograph
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Wittnauer 245T GMT Chronograph

Ever wish that you could find a watch that has the cushion case of a late-model Heuer Autavia, the Mercedes hands of a Rolex Submariner, a GMT function, and is also a chronograph?

Well, here it is!

While we’re tempted to just drop the mic and leave it there, we’re not going to miss an opportunity to extol the virtues of this watch—the Wittnauer 245T GMT Chronograph.

Some collectors might refer to this watch as a “poor man’s Heuer,” due to its similarity to versions of GMT Autavias in the large cushion cases popular in the 1970s. However, this watch has enough going for it on its own to merit consideration.

First is the watch’s overall general aesthetic. While the Heuer Autavia GMT used the “Pepsi”—that is, blue and red—color configuration made popular (even ubiquitous) by the Rolex GMT Master, this watch has a red and black rotating GMT bezel. Often referred to as a “Coke” bezel by collectors—because reasons—this color-way is less often seen.

On this watch, the bezel has taken on a weathered, faded look that’s less fire engine red and more burnt orange, which we absolutely love.

Then there are the Mercedes hands, a feature seen on only one Heuer Autavia—the Diver 100. Though more or less the exclusive purview of Rolex, the fact that they’re found on a chronograph made by another brand—let alone a Wittnauer—is something quite exotic. We love how the handset has taken on a positively pumpkin-colored patina that matches the hour markers.

Next, and perhaps most importantly, are the internals. This watch is powered by the Valjoux 724, a variant of the redoubtable Valjoux 72 with an added GMT function. Known for being a workhorse of a movement that’s as beautiful as it is reliable, the Valjoux 72 has collectors simply raving (including us).

Not least of all is the fact that Wittnauer is an old brand with a pedigree just as admirable as Heuer’s. Established in New York in the 1890s, Wittnauer made its name making the kind of sturdy, dependable, rough-and-ready chronographs and instruments that aviators like Amelia Earhart and Jimmy Mattern loved. With a reputation like that, it’s hard to go wrong.

Quite the rare bird, this Witty would be the perfect addition to any collection, so it’s best to snatch it up before it flies away.

Details

SKU: AS02213

Stainless steel case is approximately 41mm (excluding crown and pushers). Reference 245T/7006. Valjoux 724 manually-winding chronograph GMT movement.

Overall Condition: Case is in very good condition overall with crisp bevels and no signs of over-polishing. Case does have signs of moderate use and wear consistent with age. Bezel has faded beautifully. Dial is in great condition with warm patina to the luminescent elements. Unsigned crown. Case back is in very good condition with minor signs of wear.

Includes one 20mm black leather strap with orange contrast stitching.

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