Gear: 3 Vintage Driving Watches You Can Buy Right Now

3 Vintage Driving Watches You Can Buy Right Now

By Isaac Wingold
December 28, 2016

I’ve said it once, and I’ll say it again. Despite what the big-budget ad campaigns of recent years would suggest, the Autavia was Heuer’s original racing chronograph that truly cemented their involvement in the timing of motorsport. This week, let’s start off this week by taking a look at one of my favorite variants of the iconic, important chronograph.

Heuer Autavia Reference 73463


Around the same time that this watch would’ve been manufactured, Heuer made a rare, orange-accented version of the Autavia which collectors now refer to as the “Orange Boy.” As the all orange hands and presence of black subdials would indicate, this is no Orange Boy, but if orange is your color, you’ll be sure to like this vibrant piece.

Save for a few signs of natural wear and tear — a small bezel chip and some light case scratches, nothing too serious — this unpolished example is in great shape, and would make a fine addition to any Heuer collection.


Vintage Candino Chronograph


If an Autavia is what you’re after, but the holiday season has you tapped out, I think I might have a solution. I’ve never heard of Candino, and I’m guessing that you haven’t either, but does it really matter? Just look at this thing!

Red, white, and black are three colors that work very well together on a chronograph dial, and in the case of this Candino, this notion certainly holds true. Thanks to its multiple multicolored scales, and a tonneau-form case, you can get the Autavia look without breaking the bank.

Vintage Clinton Chronograph


If you browse around for vintage chronographs long enough, you’ll start to recognize that back in the day, countless brands offered what was ultimately the same watch as that of the competition, but under a different name. This “Clinton” chronograph reflects this chapter of well.

In the past, I’ve seen near identical watches with the names Nivada Grenchen and Croton on the dial, but I must say that I prefer this piece with its all black color scheme to the rest. It also happens to look quite good on the black tropic strap which the seller has it currently mounted on.

Buyer Beware: Universal Geneve “Evil Nina” Compax


Before we end off for the week, I’d like to shed some light on a watch you might want to steer clear of. Like any other deal-hunting watch collector, I was intrigued when I saw the words “Universal Geneve Evil Nina” accompanied by a low current bid, but upon closer inspection, this is nowhere close to being an honest example of the Rindt-worn Compax.

While the seller does state that the dial has been “refinished,” I’d hazard a guess that it’s just plain old fake, along with the hands, crown, and bezel insert. If a case and movement is what you’re after, knock yourself out, but otherwise I’d suggest holding off.

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1 year ago

After a devastating storm like Hurricane Ida, there are many different ways you can help people who were impacted. Donating money is usually the most needed form of help.

6 years ago

I applaud the inclusion of some more modestly priced watches. Thank you! I also would like to suggest that an occasional article on blatant rip offs is not misplaced either. Your knowledge and ability to disseminate
information to a larger audience means that you can easily help those of us in a less enlightened position.

Adam Fay
Adam Fay
6 years ago

the ‘Evil Nina’ is now bidding for $5400 USD…