Gear: 3 Vintage Driving Watches You Can Buy Right Now

3 Vintage Driving Watches You Can Buy Right Now

By Isaac Wingold
August 30, 2016

During the 1970s, Heuer introduced us to another bold chronograph which bore a striking resemblance to what is now one of the brand’s most desirable production models, the Autavia. Aptly named the Heuer Calculator, this watch featured a slide rule bezel instead of the standard tachymeters and minute tracks as seen on most other Autavia offshoots, which added a significant amount of heft and wrist presence to the piece. Would you wear it on your wrist?

Heuer Calculator


Given their larger 45mm case size, clean examples of the Calculator don’t command quite as much as other Autavias, so if you can pull off that big of a watch, you’re in luck. Additionally, if you’ve got the time, the slide rule can be used as a novel way to convert between kilometres and miles, among other things.

Zodiac Chronograph


As I mentioned in a previous article, Heuer was known for producing what were almost identical versions of its own watches for other brands, like Clebar, Zodiac, Hamilton, and Tradition. Without the Heuer name on the dial, you can get yourself a relatively affordable Carrera, like this example in stainless steel, currently being offered for sale by Menta Watches.

The main thing to note about this piece, is the outstanding condition it’s in after years of careful wear and preservation. The case is razor sharp, with original lines still clearly visible, and the silver sunburst dial looks to be in just about perfect shape. This particular example also includes a “ladder-style” bracelet, which is a rarity in its own right.

Breitling Top Time


While Breitling’s marketing in recent years has focused greatly on its history in aviation, it too produced wristwatches with motorsport in mind, like this stunning Top Time. With legible, neon orange luminous hands, and a UPH scale for timing events and calculating speed, this chronograph would’ve certainly been useful behind the wheel back in 1973.

The dial on the example in question is in wonderful shape, with no noticeable signs of wear, and although the case looks to have been polished in the past, it’s nice to see that the brushed sunburst finish on the case’s surface has been reapplied.

If you’re looking for a driver’s watch with an added pop of color, this might just do the trick.

Which vintage driving watches have you been coveting this week?

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Felix Belanger
Felix Belanger
7 years ago

“You can buy” damn… I thought you were talking about me 🙁

Patrick Peters
Patrick Peters
7 years ago
Reply to  Felix Belanger

This is a nice and more affordable alternative Felix:

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