Technically speaking, Chopard offers the Chopard Grand Prix de Monaco Historique Chronograph 168570-3001 on either a titanium bracelet or a port-holed black with yellow stitching Barenia leather strap. The nylon NATO-strap was to be an accessory available for purchase. I didn’t like that idea and told them to include the NATO strap with either of the watches at no additional price. When I spoke to them later, they mentioned that, at least in the United States, they decided to include the NATO strap with either watch – but I don’t know their policy for the rest of the world. The NATO strap is a delightful and attractive option, but the leather strap or bracelet is very fine as well. Because I can’t decide between the NATO strap and the bracelet, I needed to wear them both (yes, I could have switched them out, but I did it Chopard’s way… OK?).
On the bracelet, the Monaco Historique Chronograph takes a slightly different tone which is dressier and more suitable for business attire or “evenings.” It does change the personality of the watch, but not in a bad way. I like the bracelet a lot, but I do want Chopard to start offering more micro-adjust features. Chopard does offer a half-link with the bracelet, but I nevertheless found the butterfly-style deployant to either be a bit too tight or a bit too loose, with and without the half link. Of course, wearing comfort will vary from wrist to wrist (and watch case design to watch case design), but in the future, I’d like to see Chopard add some additional ergonomic options to their otherwise attractive (and expensive) bracelets.
Inside this and many other Chopard racing watches is the tired and true Swiss ETA Valjoux 7750 automatic movement. Yes, this isn’t the most exciting movement in the world, but it is pretty darn reliable and Chopard uses a high-grade version that they send to COSC for a Chronometer certification. This particular Chopard Grand Prix de Monaco Historique Chronograph does not have an exhibition caseback, which is probably OK. The case is further water resistant to 100 meters – which is a welcome step up from the 50 meters of water resistance of some of the existing Chopard Mille Miglia cases.
What Chopard lacks in mechanical ingenuity and risk taking in the 2014 Chopard Grand Prix de Monaco Historique Chronograph (and watch collection overall), it makes up for in a stunning attention to detail and wonderfully curated design. In other words… this is a high-end Swiss watch and all that comes with it. I am certainly a fan of the design and wearing it has brought me a lot of joy. Then again, if asked whether or not I would put money down for one, I would ask myself how often I would feel like wearing a bold black and yellow watch (or how often I do racing stuff)? Price for the ref. 168570-3001 Chopard Grand Prix de Monaco Historique Chronograph watch on the leather strap is $7,640 which goes up to $9,330 on the titanium bracelet. chopard.com
>Model: Grand Prix de Monaco Historique Chronograph 168570-3001
>Price: $7,640 – $9,330
>Size: 44.5 mm
>Would reviewer personally wear it: Yes
>Friend we’d recommend it to first: Sports watch lover looking for an attractive chronograph to mix their passion for design with their passion for racing culture.
>Best characteristic of watch: Beautiful design mixed with first rate fit and finishing.
>Worst characteristic of watch: Expensive price paired with common movement.