HEUER AUTAVIA GMT

Regular price $17,387
Sale price $17,387 Regular price

THE ESSENTIALS

MAKE: HEUER AUTAVIA
MODEL: 2446c
YEAR: 1969
BOX/PAPERS: NO/NO
CASE DIAMETER: 40mm
CASE MATERIAL: STAINLESS STEEL
BRACELET MATERIAL: CORFAM
MOVEMENT: MANUAL WIND

Heuer first applied the name Autavia (a portmanteau of Automotive and Aviation) back in the 30s when they produced dash clocks for racing cars and aircrafts, signifying its intended use in both automobiles and airplanes - this golden era of Motorsport and Racing is the period of time where the name Autavia is perhaps most associated with.

The Heuer Autavia GMT combines Heuer’s mastery of the Racing Chronograph with a GMT function. 

The 2446c 2nd execution GMT is in stunning condition; the dial is clean, and all the tritium markers are still intact and have aged beautifully. The bezel has turned a bright aquamarine blue and a pinky-red. The pushers are the fluted type, that came after the initial rounded version and the case back being the compressor style snap back.

The Valjoux 72 not only looks incredible but works superbly and is keeping time well. For us the 2446c is one of my favourite from the brand, seldom seen in the wild, it has a place in any watch collection and holds its own against much more expensive pieces.

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HEUER AUTAVIA GMT

  • London Showroom

    Pickup available, usually ready in 2-4 days

    35/37 Ludgate Hill
    London EC4M 7JN
    United Kingdom

    +442072481321

more with less

How many truly water resistant GMT Chronographs from the 60s can you think of? My guess is one, although there are a few others, the 'C' or 'Compressor' case Autavia is possibly most useful 60s Heuer and it’s not difficult to image the lifestyle it was made for. This GMT offered the ability to fly to to your favorite track while keeping local and home time, record laps on the chronograph, and relax in the hotel pool afterward with a martini.

You’d have needed a Daytona and GMT-Master on two wrists to do the same under the Rolex brand in period. That is innovation as Marc Andreessen defines it: doing more with less.

The 40mm Heuer compressor was a unique design that was meant to be superior to screw-backs. They were constructed in such a way that as water pressure built on the case exterior, gaskets would be more firmly compressed. In effect, the deeper one went the more water resistant the junction became. For this reason, the crowns and pushers are not even screw-down.

But this watch isn’t all practicality, it’s equally about audacious design and details. The 24-hour bezel is more bold than Conor McGregor after a few Guinness. The chronograph pushers are fluted. Its dial has bright red accents and a stark white chronograph hand.

Underneath beats a modified Valjoux 72, probably the most storied chronograph calibre of all time. While very collectible, the valuations on these aren’t nearly as crazy as some other Valjoux 72 peers. I don’t understand most of the watch market these days, but the 2446C GMT seems like a outsized bit of loud 60s motorsport lifestyle for not much more than a standard Carrera.

This example has a lovely dial, truly. The tritium is all there and all cream everywhere. There’s no water damage. The register aren’t even spotting. The bezel is just very slightly ghosted and showing light wear. There’s light to moderate wear on the case, but strong factory lines.

Words courtesy of Hairspring.com

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