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Nixon Goes Upscale With Its Automatic Chrono LTD Watch

Nixon Goes Upscale With Its Automatic Chrono LTD Watch Watch Releases

Nixon has long been mostly a fashion brand, with bold, oversized designs and quartz movements. (Also good for presidential candidates!) With the launch of their Elite collection, they are moving into mechanical movements and higher prices:

Simply put, these are the highest quality watches we make. Each one is made to the most exacting standards of Swiss watch makers, is custom built and features the Automatic ETA movement that has been the standard of quality timepieces for decades.

The Automatic Chrono LTD is the flagship of the collection, a very limited run of 25 watches, in ion-plated steel with a tungsten bezel and crown cap. Tungsten is very unusual, it’s most often seen as the nose cone material for missiles, so if nothing else it’s a good conversation starter. Tungsten is incredibly tough and should make a good bezel material, remaining flawless for many years. The watch comes with a matching bracelet, though if you look I’m puzzled that they chose straight end links instead of fitted. They also include a crocodile band with deployant buckle for a change of look.

The movement is the ETA/Valjoux 7750 chronograph, in this version without the day and date. Reliable, tough and easy to get serviced.

Nixon Goes Upscale With Its Automatic Chrono LTD Watch Watch Releases
I was unable to find case measurements, though judging by the placement of the subdials, I’d estimate the case to be at least 45mm across, perhaps as much as 50mm. Big and bold.

Other notes – sapphire crystal with anti-reflective interior coating, superluminova on the hands, water resistant to 200m, back window mineral crystal.

At $4,800 they face a lot of competition. Starting around $1,500 there are numerous 7750-based chronographs, so I’m not sure how the value proposition is for this one. It could be a small run to test the waters, they do say that these are for sale “at Nixon’s most exclusive watch dealers.”


What do you think? Does Nixon have the credibility to sell in this price range? Would you buy one?

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  • B0rdeaux

    Appeals to the brash non-conformist American market. Here in San Diego Nixon is a well known surf brand. Clearly lacks the Swiss heritage and appeal and is not unique enough to stand out in the crowded market.. The Nixon website now states the first run at 45 pieces.

  • B0rdeaux

    Also very boring rotor decoration.

  • They’re really pushing it with that price. Considering the brand heritage and the materials and movement, it’s really high.

  • In Time

    Who in their right mind would pay $4,800 for a Nixon? An Omega Speedmaster Professional could be had for less and that’s a chronograph that has proven itself time and time again. But as they say, “A fool and his money are soon parted.”

  • DougCarnahan

    Interesting to see more american based watch companies. I suggest reviewing some rgm watches as they are based in the us (specifically pa near me) and make very exclusive high quality mechanical watches.


    • DougCarnahan

      I wouldnt mind doing a review myself…

  • gyang333

    this is awful, I’d say Bell & Ross is more “value” than this…

    Firstly, that movement looks completely unfinished, second, Nixon has no business being in this market segment…

    Thirdly $4,800?!

  • IsmaelMartinez

    I see what they are trying to do commercially. They are not going to make a cent on these collection. They are just part of their advertising budget.  They just want to get their name out there and get noticed so they can keep selling the other over priced quartz and Japanese movement based watches. This moves has been made by many brands however with a little more substance. Say Lexus LF vs an ES which is a rebranded Camry. Same as Seiko with the Spring Drive (more substance) but I bet not a significant part of the bottom line. 
    So while the Nixon LTD is not for me and only will be for 25 hopefuls, they can boast that they can make serious priced pieces and start to claim space. After all their key consumer base maybe getting slightly older. BTW they got all of us to note.

  • DangerussArt

    $4,800 in Invicta dollars. Can’t imagine they sell one at that price.

  • osprey87

    There is no way I would pay $4800 for a Nixon. There are so many other chronographs with a Valjoux 7750 for under $2000 that I’d rather spend my money on. I suppose they might sell some to people who know nothing about watches or don’t care about money.

  • Eric___007

    Awful. They did not even bother to decorate the rotor behind that mineral crystal. I wonder if that tungsten came from used warheads…

  • ChrisTiradoMX

    4800?? that’s more expensive than my Sinn 756… now that’s one hell of a watch… this isn’t…

  • rsteck

    I’ve considered some of the Nixon’s in the $1000 range, but this is silly.

  • nateb123

    Nixon sells ceramic watches with 2824s in them for $1600-3000 and people buy them full pop quite often.  The non-chrono version of this goes for 1200-1300 so that extreme price differential is mostly due to the limited edition, not the chrono.  That said, it’ll still sell.

    • nateb123

      It is also worth noting that Nixon has a lifetime warranty on its Elite automatic pieces.  If you service it at regular intervals, it’s always covered and the service is amazing.  I’ve seen ceramic cases chipped, completely the owner’s fault, and the case has been replaced at no charge.
      The article is a bit misleading though.  Nixon has had an Elite line for at least 5 years and they’ve sold tens of thousands of elite watches.  This chronograph is just one of the Barney’s special edition watches (of which they’ve done dozens).  They always sell out despite being far more expensive than “regular” Nixon Elites.

      • Zeitblom

        ” This chronograph is just one of the Barney’s special edition watches”
        As in the dinosaur?

  • pmignone

    Does Nixon have the credibility? It appears that Nixon believes that there’s only one way to find out 😉
    I personally would get one, but there would be at least 25 people that would. Credit to them for giving it a shot.

  • Zeitblom

    The price is a bit of  a joke, but full credit to them for using tungsten and not crummy old titanium. If they made a watch completely out of tungsten [it would be extremely heavy, which is good of course] then I might be interested.

  • watchjeff

    it’s a great looking watch and I like the large size.  placement of stem and pushers is a nice distinctive touch as well.  Lack of any decorative treatment of the movement makes that part of the watch a downer.   The problem with the price is the brand is not yet positioned in the market to sustain it.  Thus, if you buy one and then want to sell or trade down the road, I think you’ll take a hit.

  • Neil C

    The price is irrelevant, these is just a halo/collectors piece. Pity about it being Ion-plated only.

  • gabogdl

    its very expensive, i should admit i like it it a lot, im closing to falling in love with this one, but for 5k+- no wayyy. i can get a better watch with all that money.
    btw any watch thats looks alike ? around 700-1k dls?
    thanks, srry for my bad english

  • Ulysses31

    With this watch Nixon are getting about as much love as their crusty unloved namesake.  I actually quite like the way it looks but there’s nothing much else appealing about it.  The movement is undecorated and the price is stupid.  A watch with so little to like about it must have world-class marketing and I don’t think anyone believes Nixon is a premium brand other than those who know little about watches.  It’ll sell of course, I just feel that this company is having ever greater delusions of grandeur, and they lose ever more credibility by doing this.  There’s a void in the low and mid range for quality but affordable watches.  Seiko and Citizen make solid watches but they are poorly marketed and they lack the recognition and fashionable appeal of Nixon and other youth brands, and this has emboldened the manufacturers of cheap garish timepieces to go after this segment.  It’s a preposterous trend but the average customer will buy whatever the shop assistant tells them is cool, and for any price – because a high price equals quality, right?  Mostly what I see even in high-end department stores are rows and rows of cheaply made large-sized watches with a fashionable brand name glued crudely to the dial, sold as something refined.  It’s a trend I do not like.

  • Ayreonaut

    Not even close, but the little hands are the most glaring error.

  • Kris C


  • Krobilad

    4.8 k bucks for Nixon? i lol’d

  • mandime

    I don’t know which review was more pointless, this or the Glam Rock piece.  Both would be most suitable on the wrists of many a reality show star.  The rest of us have tears in our eyes from laughing so hard, and also wondering if Mr. Hubbard is getting endorsement deals. . . daft

    • mandime huh? A fashion brand branching into automatics isn’t interesting news?

      • mandime

        gerikson mandime Interesting, yes.  But for all the wrong reasons.

  • Waltermaximus

    April’s Fool’s came early this year at Nixon’s HQ ?

  • 6footcuts

    I actually bought this watch when it was a limited edition at barneys.  same watch with a white dial.  it’s a beautiful piece but I ended up returning it.  the first week the small second hand just fell off.  literally, just popped off.  it was sent away to be fixed and upon returning the chronograph was acting funny.  the second hand was lining up +4 seconds when resetting.  eventually that hand just fell off too.  at that point i just returned it.  nice attempt by nixon but obviously the quality in craftmanship is not there.  they back it by a lifetime warranty but what fun is it to have to send a watch back every week.  i ended up buying the breitling transocean chronograph.  can’t even compare the two.

    • 6footcuts

      note:  i bought the watch because barneys slashed the price to 2400.  and with my girlfriend’s employee discount i ended up getting it for like 1700.  a far more reasonable price.

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