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Chopard Mille Miglia Classic Chronograph California Mille Edition Watch

Chopard Mille Miglia Classic Chronograph California Mille Edition Watch Watch Releases

For two years running, Chopard has been the Official Timekeeper and sponsor of the annual California Mille car race.  The California Mille is a 1000-mile race through the backroads and towns of northern California. The four-day open-road adventure is a homage to Italy’s Mille races held from 1927 to 1957. To commemorate the race, Chopard has released the Chopard Mille Miglia Classic Chronograph California Mille Edition Watch — a watch that’s so “Mille-y” the brand included it in the name twice.

Chopard Mille Miglia Classic Chronograph California Mille Edition Watch Watch Releases

Case & Dial

The polished stainless steel case measures in at a modest 42mm in diameter and features a sapphire crystal. I find this to be a perfect size for racing chronographs. I also think the polished case is pleasant, even if it’s not something I would normally spring for in a sport watch. One of my favorite features of the Mille Miglia collection is the pushers. The large onion-esque crown, with slightly exaggerated pushers, is simply aesthetically pleasing and functional, something racing watches perplexingly forego more often than they should. The watch comes on a leather strap with rubber underbelly and is water resistant up to 50 meters.

The dial, however, is where the California Mille Edition really shines. Taking influence from the California state flag, the most blatant feature is the red racing stripe at about 6 o’ clock. Further, the green tachymeter contrasts nicely with the dial. Mimicking vintage dashboards, the silver dial features matching subdials but with enough texture to not get lost. Overall, the dial looks and feels quintessentially California without any unnecessary California Mille-specific branding. That’s something I’ve always admired about Chopard’s limited and special edition watches. Besides the cut-off indices, my only other criticism is the date. I think it should have been omitted altogether instead of obstructing the red stripe.

Chopard Mille Miglia Classic Chronograph California Mille Edition Watch Watch Releases

Movement

Flipping the watch over, however, you’ll find the “California Republic” flag across the sapphire caseback. It’s less subtle, and I can already hear the gripes about covering up the movement, but it doesn’t bother me. The movement is unspecified, but it’s likely the ETA 2894-2 self-winding chronograph used in previous Mille Miglia watches. The COSC-certified movement features a 42-hour power reserve and beats at 4-Hz.

Chopard Mille Miglia Classic Chronograph California Mille Edition Watch Watch Releases

CONCLUSION

I now have four Mille Miglia articles under my belt, and this is undoubtedly my favorite. I have no personal connection to California, but that doesn’t stop me from finding this watch one of the most charming of the collection.  It does a great job of bringing a subtle influence from a niche event to a staple watch. The Chopard Mille Miglia Classic Chronograph California Mille Edition will be limited to 29 pieces and is $6,590 a $500 premium over the traditional Racing Colors models. Read more at chopard.com.

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  • Raymond Wilkie

    ” large onion-esque crown “…I don’t see anything esque about it. What a bunched up chopped up mess of a dial. This ticks about every box of things I don’t like about a watch.

  • Another masterpiece of Chopard Mille Miglia collection.
    But I always want a Mille Miglia Bullhead Chrono…

  • Lingua Franca

    Richard Mille should do a “Mille Milla” and sell it for $1,000,000 natch!

    • Gokart Mozart

      They already have several million dollar watches. Not a big deal for them

  • Gokart Mozart

    Not one of the better Chopards. Not even close to one of the better Mille Miglias.

    I don’t really know where to look on the dial, and it just looks messy. Why do Americans need to have the subdials labelled?

  • Larry Holmack

    I have to say that I mainly like it because it’s a chronograph…and I have a thing for them.
    But…like others…I find it rather uninspiring, and not all that attractive for the $6 grand they are asking for it.
    Considering it’s made for California’s 1%’ers…I am sure they’ll find a few not living in tents, among the human waste in the streets, that will gladly part with $6 grand for this one.

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