Today Tissot brings us another exciting relaunch of its vast historical trove, the PR516 mechanical chronograph from the 1960s.
Linked to the motorized world, this chronograph gained prominence during the 60s and 70s, being used by several personalities such as the actor Roger Moore, the Swiss F2 and F3000 driver Harry Zweitel and the Peruvian rally driver Henry Bradley. Over time, the watch also went through several iterations, but the one that stood out the most was the incorporation of the Lemania 873 mechanical movement just three years after its launch.
The new PR516 that now arrives comes in a brushed and polished stainless steel case measuring 41mm wide by 13.70mm high, which is far from the 36mm of the original, but which benefits from short lugs, glassbox sapphire crystal, tachymeter and pulsometer bezel with the first fully illuminated by Super-LumiNova and the second only on the markers protected by a mineral glass insert. Fluted crown at 3 o’clock flanked by two chrono pushers, see-through caseback and 100m water resistance.
The matte black dial, which is a recreation of the original, comes with a three-register layout at 3-6-9 o’clock, all outlined by a silver ring, materialized into a 30-minute counter with the first 5 minutes striped in light blue, a 12-hour subdial and running seconds, respectively. Applied baton hour markers and hands all filled with the same luminous material that we can find on the bezel, an orange chronograph centre seconds hand with the branded ‘T’ shaped counterweight and whose hue highlights the other two hands assigned to the chronograph function and, finally, the brand’s contemporary lettering at noon followed by the year of its foundation.
It is through the glass of the rear case that we can observe the Valjoux A05.291 manual movement, based on the Valjoux 7753 automatic movement, which is equipped with Nivachron and Nivachoc technology that protects it against magnetic fields and shocks respectively, presenting an accuracy of +/- 5 seconds per day, running at 28,800 Vph and offering up to 68 hours of power reserve.
The watch comes attached to a 3-row steel bracelet with a folding clasp and can be found in the brand’s official boutiques and authorized dealers for a price of CHF 1,600.
It should also be noted that there are three other versions that come with a Quartz movement, one with a blue dial, another with a black dial and finally a steel and gold version with a black dial.
It is without a doubt another great addition from the brand that demonstrates that the strategy started some time ago of bringing old glories to the surface is a winning bet.
The new chronograph (mechanical version) comes with a retro vibe from the original, although the dimensions mentioned above are probably its Achilles heel, we wouldn’t go as far as the original 36mm, but we are convinced that 38 or 39mm would sound much better.
Another thing we would like to see and this criticism also extends to other brands that follow a similar path is that they opt for a tappered bracelet which, in addition to having a more vintage connotation, looks more elegant.
More information at www.tissotwatches.com.
Model: PR516 Chronograph Mechanical
Case Material: Stainless steel
Case Dimensions: 41 mm diameter, 13.70 mm thick
Crystal: Sapphire Glass
Case Back: See-through
Strap: Three-row stainless stell bracelet with a folding clasp
Water Resistence: 100 Meters
Calibre: Valjoux A05.29
Functions: Hours, minutes, small seconds, chronograph
Frequency: 4 Hz (28,800 Vph)
Power Reserve: 68 Hours
Price: CHF 1,600