The Heuer brand dates its history back to the 1860’s and throughout the majority of its history, the brand has had a strong affiliation with various sporting forms. Whether branded with the Heuer name or produced for a private label you can find their watches associated with sailing, aviation, diving, and auto racing. The most important of these to the history of the brand was undoubtedly auto racing though. The connection between Heuer and auto racing began early in the company’s history with the advent of their line of dashboard mounted race timers. If you have been to a car show you will have undoubtedly seen one or multiple Heuer clocks mounted to the dashboard of vintage race and rally cars. With such a strong connection already formed in the automotive racing world, it was an easy jump for the brand to continue to push the automotive connection with their wrist worn chronographs. The best examples of this connection are the Carrera, named after the Mexian road race, the Carrera Panamericana, and, the Monaco. The Monaco is best known for being the watch Steve McQueen wore for his famous role in the movie Le Mans and that exact watch just sold this weekend at auction for over $2.2 million dollars.
The Heuer Reference 12 is a model that seems to slip under the radar even among Heur enthusiasts. At first glance most people would say that it is a part of the Pasadena model lineup that traces their history back to the early Porsche Design PVD watches and while that is clearly the early lineage of the model there is much more to them. One of the major differences between this and the Pasadena is obvious, it doesn’t say Pasadena on the dial. As a result of lacking a brand name such as Carrera, Montreal, Pasadena, or 501 the Reference 12 seems to not have been much of a sales success and examples seem to be few and far between. Another difference is the two register layout, which is the result not of an inhouse calibre but rather the workhorse Valjoux 7734. Like many Heuer models of the day, you can also find white labeled versions of the watch made for brands like LeJour and Arctos but the Heuer branded examples like the one seen here is definitely the one to have.
The 41mm PVD steel case is in great condition. There are a few very scratch dings on the case but otherwise, the condition is fantastic. Likewise, the crown and pushers, both of which are correct, are in very good condition with some of the base steel beginning to show through in high touch areas. The caseback has some larger scratches most likely due to opening the caseback. The watch is shown on a rally style leather strap with a correct to the reference Heuer signed buckle.
The Dial and Hands
The dial and hands are in excellent condition with no major flaws to note. All components appear to be correct and are presumed to be original. The lume is uniform and shows no signs of degradation.
This watch is powered by a manually wound, Valjoux 7734 chronograph movement. The watch is running with all of the functions of the chronograph working properly. The service history of the watch is unknown.
|Location||New York City|
|Reference Number||Ref. 12|
|Movement||Manual, Valjoux 7734|
|Case Material||PVD Steel|
|Band Material||Leather Strap|