Heuer - The 2021 New York Watch Auction New York Saturday, December 11, 2021 | Phillips

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  • Manufacturer: Heuer
    Year: Circa 1962
    Reference No: 2446
    Movement No: 456’598
    Case No: 49’301
    Model Name: Autavia, “Full Lume”, 1st execution dial, 1st execution hands
    Material: Stainless steel
    Calibre: Manual, cal. Valjoux 72, 17 jewel
    Bracelet/Strap: Stainless steel, double beads of rice Gay Frères link bracelet with HL endlinks, max overall length 200mm
    Clasp/Buckle: Heuer stainless steel clasp stamped 3.69
    Dimensions: 39mm Diameter
    Signed: Case, dial, movement and clasp signed by maker and Gay Frères

  • Catalogue Essay

    Long associated with the racetrack, Jack Heuer knew the importance of precision timekeeping. When he lost a local rally due to misreading the dashboard timers for motorsports he designed during the 1950s, he sought to create more legible chronographs with dials and hands that were clean, crisp and easy to read. This experience clearly shaped the design of the earliest Heuer Autavias from the early 1960s, which featured oversized contrasting registers and large, luminous dauphine hands and numerals.
    In 1961, Jack Heuer and his production team decided to create the Autavia with the name coming from a combination of the words “Automobile” and “Aviation” as their first named chronograph. Prior to then, Heuer hadn’t designed a chronograph wristwatch with a rotating bezel, and the Autavia would have this new feature with a choice of calibrations. Two bezel types were offered, one with 60 separate one-minute divisions that allowed the wearer to set a marker for a defined interval of time, while the second bezel had 12-hour divisions that would allow for another time zone to be displayed. An early Heuer brochure from 1962 illustrated both the reference 2446 and the reference 3646 under the title "New AUTAVIA Chronographs for pilots, sportsmen, divers and scientists”. Clearly, Heuer aimed to market this new collection across a broad spectrum of active professionals.

    Phillips is proud to offer this truly superb, “First Execution” Autavia reference 2446 from 1962. It is without a doubt one of the finest examples ever to be offered publicly. Featuring charismatic, oversized white subsidiary dials that contrast beautifully with the untouched black dial, it is accentuated by its original “first execution” full lume hands. The luminous hour markers and bezel triangle have acquired a lovely mocha patina, together with the hands. Its case and original bezel remain exceptionally well-preserved, with all factory finishing remaining crisp and intact. It further features its original unsigned crown and early pushers. Finally, the watch is further enhanced by its lovely, original “double beads of rice” Gay Frères bracelet, with original and extremely rare ‘HL’ endlinks. The complete originality, outstanding condition, and utter rarity of this nearly 60 year old wristwatch will be sure to please even the most discerning collector.

  • Artist Biography


    Swiss • 1860

    This iconic chronograph manufacturer has a long tradition of precision timekeeping. As early as 1882, founder Edouard Heuer held a patent for a chronograph watch; in 1887, he received a patent for an oscillating pinion, which is still in use today. These specialized timepieces have been at the heart of the firm's success, enabling the brand to be chosen as early timekeepers for the Olympics. In 1969, the company introduced their first automatic chronograph watch, the Monaco Heuer, which celebrated the Monaco Grand Prix. Other key chronograph models include the Autavia and the Carrera, all of which having become iconic models of the firm.

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Ref. 2446
An extremely well-preserved, very rare, and early stainless steel chronograph wristwatch with oversized registers, large bezel, full lume hands, and Gay Frères bracelet

Circa 1962
39mm Diameter
Case, dial, movement and clasp signed by maker and Gay Frères

$30,000 - 60,000 

Sold for $163,800

Contact Specialist

Paul Boutros

Head of Watches, Americas

+1 (212) 940-1293



The 2021 New York Watch Auction

New York Auction 11 - 12 December 2021