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.

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

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.

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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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