As a female watch collector, I don’t fall into the typical category of styles that most manufacturers market towards women. That poses an issue when looking for watches because many men’s watches are a bit too large for those with smaller wrists. Frankly, many female collectors don’t want an abundance of diamonds added to a watch to make it “for women” – we really just want the same watches that men have, but smaller.
This is why I love Dan Henry’s approach toward watches. He has created a collection based on vintage luxury watches, and creates them in versatile sizes, or multiple offerings of sizes. When I saw the 1964 Gran Turismo I knew I had to have it!
This is obviously going to be a positive review, because all I can say about this watch is WOW! Not only does Dan offer four versions of the piece, but they are all 38 mm which seems to be a sweet spot for a sporty chronograph, and meets the needs for almost all wrist sizes and genders. And this watch is VERY sporty. It was hard to choose between the four models, but I ultimately chose the classic black-on-white (or silver in this case) “panda” dial configuration which does not disappoint. In person it’s a real sparkler. With the exception of the outer links of the bracelet and the sides of the center section of the main case all of the stainless steel surfaces are highly polished, as well as the raised indices and hands on all of the dials. The main hands are polished and the chronograph seconds hand is blued. All three sub-dials are black with a circular graining pattern.
The logo with Dan Henry’s name is located in a balanced place between 12 o’clock and dial center, and not overstated. The date window between 4:00 and 5:00 is also subtle while still being readable. It’s important to note that this watch is also offered without a date window if you so desire. It’s a classy watch, and has an ornate arrow at 12 o’clock where the tachymeter numbers start on the chapter ring. I think the arrow gives it a classy feel that is reminiscent of the vintage days of road racing (close to my heart since I have a husband who is a race car driver). The back of the case shows an embossed Aston Martin DB5 which really adds to the classic car feel.
The meca-quartz movement is a new one for my collection. It uses quartz technology for the main timekeeping function of the watch, but has a mechanical module for operating the chronograph. That gives you the “sweeping” movement of the seconds hand, and snappy reset you’ll find in a high end chronograph like an Omega Speedmaster. I guess you can call the meca-quartz a “hybrid” of sorts, all powered by a battery.
I love wearing this timepiece with the stainless steel “grains of rice” bracelet. It’s very comfortable, and almost gives the look of tire treads or chrome trim on a show car. The push button deployant clasp is very easy to use and has multiple micro adjustments for that perfect fit. I tried the soft black leather strap that the piece also ships with, but it didn’t have enough holes to accommodate my small wrist (another common frustration for female collectors). That can be pretty easily remedied with the careful use of a leather punch, but it can’t be shortened easily so it’s a no-go for me. It does have quick release spring bars which I really like, but it if you want to remove or install the metal bracelet you’ll be reaching for the spring bar tool. The leather strap changes the look of the watch by resembling leather driving gloves or a luxurious leather car interior. I’m really a metal bracelet gal though since I’m often getting my hands wet, but the two options provide you with a variety of looks.
I took a look at the dial with our 4x loupe and noticed how nicely done the applied indices are. They have a raised center forming a peak, and then the indices meet the dial at a 90 degree angle. The lume is applied at the end of those indices, as well as on the main hands. The silver dial has a satin frost to it, and reflects the light like a sunburst. There’s a lot going on here, but the dial is very well balanced. All of these details come together to create a piece with great composition.
I’ve enjoyed wearing this watch the last few months. It’s comfortable, looks great on my small wrist, and is super affordable for the quality Dan Henry builds into the watch. Priced at $250 USD, the Dan Henry 1964 Gran Turismo Chronograph is available on danhenrywatches.com.
- Brand & Model: Dan Henry 1964 Gran Turismo Chronograph
- Price: $250 USD
- Who we think it might be for: If you desire a classy mechanical chronograph but get chased away by luxury pricing, this watch gives you the feel and look of a classic vintage mechanical chronograph, but at quartz pricing.
- Would I buy one for myself based on what I’ve seen? I already did!
- If I could make one design suggestion, it would be: I’m overall very pleased with the entire watch. My only suggestion would be to offer the leather strap with more holes and a shorter tail to accommodate the smaller wrist.
- What spoke to me the most about this watch: Racy, vintage feel, and the perfect case size!
Technical Specifications from Dan Henry
- Material: 316L Stainless steel
- Size: 38 mm
- Crystal: Sapphire with anti-reflective coating
- Case Back: Screw-back case with 3D embossed Aston Martin DB5
- Water Resistance: 5 atm
- Inter-lug Width: 19 mm
- MOVEMENT: Seiko VK63 Meca-Quartz
- Functions: Time, date, chronograph
- Stainless steel grains of rice
- Second strap: French black leather with white stitching and quick release spring bars
- Clasp: Déployant on stainless steel, pin-buckle on leather