For those looking to enter the luxury Swiss watch game, Mathey-Tissot (not to be confused with the Tissot of the Swatch Group) would be a great starting point. The brand has a rich history of over 130 years of watchmaking, with a reputation for making solid timepieces at affordable price points.
Today, the independent brand’s annual production of about 50,000 watches per year attests to its popularity in the entry level of the luxury Swiss watch market, especially in terms of its sportier models for both men and women.
- Mathey-Tissot 1886
As a vintage watch fan, I can also attest that the secondary market for Mathey-Tissot watches is quite strong. Part of the appeal is their accessible prices, but also the novelty of some of their pieces. Prized models that are highlight sought after by collectors include the Coin Watch, the so-called “Elvis Presley”, and the Type 20 universal chronograph.
For 2018, the brand is trying to tap into that nostalgia with the neo-vintage “1886” model, which first made an appearance at Baselworld. The new watch was designed by designer Eric Giroud, who has brought back from the past the brand’s most recognizable design elements.
The first thing that captured my attention on the 1886 is the slightly curved case, which is decidedly 1970s in shape. Those years just happen to be among the most successful in the brand’s history. With a modest 42mm case diameter, the stainless steel case also sports a nice matte sandblasted finish.
- The smokey green dial of the new 1866
The dial options are equally rooted in the brand’s retro styling. There are five different dial options to choose from: black, smoky green, smoky red, smoky grey, smoky blue, and smoky brown. The colours have a long history for Mathey-Tissot’s and give the otherwise sober watch a kick of personality.
The limited edition comes in two movement options: Swiss-made quartz models expected to retail for about 500 Swiss francs, and mechanical options powered by the automatic Sellita SW200 calibre retailing for about 1,500 Swiss francs.
As the saying goes, “where there is smoke there is fire” and at those prices I have a suspicion that the new smoky-dialed 1886 models will be a hot commodity.