Just Replica Watches — Our editor-in-chief walks through replica TAG Heuer’s Autavia Cup crowdsourcing website to pick his favourite Autavia models.
In the first round of the TAG Heuer Autavia Cup you have to choose your preferred Autavia model from eight different pairs before the end of March. What better way for me to relax after a busy Baselworld than to browse through this virtual collection. Rather than trying to second guess the opinions of watch fans around the world (you can win prizes if your choices match those of the majority), I went according to my own tastes and preferences. Here is my result for the first round:
Match 1 – Reference 2446 Mark 3 v Reference 2446 Tachymeter
There is very little to distinguish between these two models from the 1960s. The Tachymeter model was a special order with the tachymeter scale added around the perimeter of the chapter ring and the configuration of the hour markers is slightly different. That is the point of differentiation that leads me to pick the Reference 2446 Mark 3 for its slightly less cluttered dial. At the time of writing, my choice has a slender majority.
Match 2 – Reference 3646 Tachymeter v Reference 3646 Mark 3
Here too, there is little to separate these two bi-compax chronograph models apart from the tachymeter. The same logic as for Match 1 dictates, therefore, that the non-tachymeter version should get my vote. Again, the majority agrees with me.
Match 3 – Reference 3646 Mark 1 v Reference 2446 Mark 2
Things start to get more interesting as I have to choose between a bi-compax and tri-compax dial configuration, a Valjoux 72 or Valjoux 92 movement and two quite different means of hour and minute indication. In this case, I opt for the more legible Reference 3646 Mark 1 with its luminescent indications. In this case, the voting public disagrees.
Match 4 – Reference 2446 Mark 4 v Reference 3646 Mark 1
Previous voting habits suggest I should choose the Reference 3646 Mark 1 because of the oversized bi-compax chronograph counters. In this case, the tropical look of the luminescent material and the distinctive arrow-shaped hands add to the appeal. Once again, my choice does not match with that of the majority.
Match 5 – Reference 2446 Mark 1 v Reference 24446C
The fact that Heuer switched from a screw-in case to a compression back case in 1968 makes this choice somewhat easier. I prefer the former and the dial arrangement on the Mark 1 with oversize tri-compax counters and the 12-hour bezel, rather than the smaller counters and busier minutes indications on the Reference 2446C. So far, my fellow voters agree.
Match 6 – Reference 2446C SN v Reference 2446 Mark 1
A similar choice as Match 5 with the only difference being the silver dial on the Reference 2446C SN and the arrow-shaped hands on the Reference 2446 Mark 1. My previous preferences for both the Mark 1 and the arrow hands make the choice of the Reference 2446 Mark 1 clear cut. In this case, twice as many people have voted for the Reference 2446C SN.
Match 7 – Reference 2446 Mark 3 v Reference 2446 Mark 1
The first choice between two “fantasy” versions pitches a classic “panda” look of black counters on a white dial and the “blacked-out” version with luminescent arrow-shaped hands and hour markers. I prefer the black dial version and those arrow-shaped hands add the perfect vintage touch. Once again, nearly twice as many people voted for the other model.
Match 8 – Reference 3646 Mark 1 v Reference 2446 Mark 1
With both of these fantasy versions appearing in “panda” configuration with similar hands, the final match becomes a straight choice between bi-compax and tri-compax. My natural preference remains the clearer bi-compax version. The public at large begs to differ, clearly favouring the three-counter version.
So far, around 3,000 people have voted in the Autavia Cup. To have your say in which model TAG Heuer re-issues at Baselworld 2017 and be in with a chance to win some great prizes, cast your vote on the Autavia Cup website.