The Enthusiast's Guide to the Autavia Cup

On Thursday, March 10, 2016, TAG Heuer announced that the brand would launch a social media based contest, to allow enthusiasts, collectors and customers to select the model of 1960s Autavia chronograph that TAG Heuer will re-issue in 2017. This contest, called the “Autavia Cup”, will commence on March 17, at Baselworld, with the winning watch to be announced in April 2016.

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This posting will provide a Guide to the Autavia Cup competition, pulling together anything and everything enthusiasts will need to follow the action, and — more importantly — to cast their vote to determine the next Autavia to be offered by TAG Heuer.

The 16 Autavias Competing in the Autavia Cup

Click on the image below to have a closer look at the 16 Autavias that will compete in the Autavia Cup.  The top 12 are “real” models that Heuer produced in the 1960s and the four on the bottom row are “Fantasy” models produced by collector Paul Gavin, operator of HeuerWorld.

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March 17, 2015

March 14, 2015 — ABlogToWatch / Informal Autavia Cup Poll

In its posting covering the Autavia Cup, ABlogToWatch includes an informal poll, allowing readers to vote on their favorite Autavia included in the competition. Through the first four days (1,740 votes), we can see some interesting trends:

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  • Looking at the four models receiving the most votes (shown above, but not in order of their popularity), we see (1) the Reference 2446C SN (Panda; compressor case), at 19.72 percent of the votes; (2) one of the “Fantasy” models, Panda version of the “Rindt”, at 14.46 percent; (3) the Reference 2446 “Rindt” Autavia, at 14.17 percent; and (4) the Reference 3646 “Andretti” Autavia, at 8.5 percent. The lesson here seems clear – the voters want a Panda version of the Autavia, and the voters like the Mark 3 Rindt and Andretti models.
  • Of the 16 watches included in the Autavia Cup competition, the four models receiving the fewest votes in the ABlogToWatch poll (places 13 through 16) are the earliest Autavias. That’s right, the very first models (2446 and 3646 / all lume hands or steel edged hands) are proving to be the least popular.
  • Three of the top seven vote-getters are the “Fantasy” Autavias, a very strong showing. Are readers suggesting that they prefer something different, rather than a literal re-issue?
  • Looking at some of the rare models, we have the All Lume Reference 2446 in 6th place, and the two Tachymeter dials holding the 8th and 10th positions.

The bottom line – The ones that are sacred to the vintage guys may not be most popular among today’s voters; Pandas are popular in the market right now; and everyone loves the racers and their Autavias – Rindt and Andretti.

The Autavia Cup — What We Know So Far (March 10, 2016)

  • TAG Heuer will be conducting a competition, by social media, for enthusiasts, collectors, anyone and everyone to select the model of vintage Autavia to be re-issued
  • The 16 models in the Autavia Cup are from the first generation Autavias, produced from 1962 through 1969 (first execution screw-back case through compression case)
  • 12 of the models were actually offered by Heuer in the 1960s, and the additional four “Fantasy” models were created through PhotoShop
  • The Autavia Cup competition will have models facing off, in head-to-head competition, with the winner of each match advancing to the next round
  • TAG Heuer will select the model to be re-issued, from the Final Four (i.e., the four watches that win the first two rounds)
  • The new Autavia will be introduced at Basleworld 2017

Got to say — Nothing short of amazing that TAG Heuer is approaching the re-issue of the Autavia through this approach . . . The Racers watch!!  The People’s watch!!

TAG Heuer Teaser / Trailer / Website

TAG Heuer has launched a special website dedicated to the Autavia Cup.

Buy the Book!!

If you like the Autavias that are included in the Autavia Cup competition, then you should buy the book, Heuer Autavia Chronographs 1962-85, by Richard Crosthwaite and Paul Gavin.  Paul supplied the photos for the Autavia Cup competition and also created the four “Fantasy” models, using PhotoShop.  The 220-page book provides a complete history of the Autavia, with hundreds of beautiful watch photos, as well as scans of historic documents.  You can order the book HERE.

Coverage of The Autavia Cup 

The Autavia Cup has had strong coverage among the bloggers:

The posting on ABlogToWatch includes a survey, in which readers cold vote for any of the 16 watches included in the Autavia Cup.  Have a look over there, to see the early results.

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Jeff Stein
March 10, 2016
(Updated, March 14, 2016)

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