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Heuer Autavia Transitional

Ref. 3646 transitional execution circa 1965/66

Maker:

Heuer

Model:

Transitional

Reference No.:

3646

Date:

Circa 1967

Serial No.:

82XXX

Case:

The case is in lovely unrestored condition, it has never once been polished. The case back is signed on both sides – the obverse with the AUTAVIA HEUER logo and the reverse HEUER-LEONIDAS SA

Bezel:

The bezel shows signed of wear but the scratches are very superficial and it still retains its lustre.

Dial:

The dial is in lovely vintage condition, it is correctly signed AUTAVIA HEUER T SWISS and the sub dials are nicely silvered and very clear. Some of the lume is missing from the markers but the dial has retained all of its innate character and originality

Hands:

The hands are the original hour & minute hands with the original lume still retained, the chronograph hand was originally white-painted but the paint has now worn off

Movement:

The movement is the original Valjoux 92 and is signed HEUER LEONIDAS SA SWISS

Strap:

Corfam-style strap with steel buckle

Price:

£25,000

Info:

The two Transitional Heuers are the 2446 and the 3646; both were brought at out the same time in 1965, and both had a very short-lived production of only a few months. Only a very few, perhaps even as few as 20-30, of each of these watches are known to have survived and the Transitional 3646 may the rarer of the two. The Transitional 3646 production lasted only a few months before the Andretti was ‘born'. The difference between the two is that the Transitional has fatter lugs, which are only very slightly bevelled, and the Transitional also has a noticeably wider bezel compared to the Andretti's very thin bezel. This particular example for sale is a stunning untouched watch with an unpolished case and I particularly like its Hour bezel as opposed to the more common Minute bezel, which somehow doesn't have the same visual impact. The few surviving Transitionals still for some reason walk in the shadows of their successors; the 2446 3rd ex and the 3646 3rd ex. – otherwise known respectively as the Rindt and Andretti, after the two eponymous F1 racing drivers. I'm writing this in late 2017 and the Transitionals are still unacknowledged and little-known – but as is so often the case with these rare pieces it won't be long before we're reminiscing about how little the Transitionals were being sold for – ‘only a few years ago'!!