Autodromo Ford GT Endurance Chronograph Le Mans 2016
About Bradley Price and his burning passion for watches and everything that roars
The Autodromo is an intelligent idea and Bradley Price's source of passion; an enthusiast of engines and industrial design that moved from Chicago to New York at the beginning of the 2000s to follow his passion for design and a man, who eventually found his own watches brand after spending ten years getting experience, while working in a design studio. The name Autodromo says a lot about his passion for Italy and for those cars that have made the history of the automobile, his brand's logo is also a clear reference to the Italian school of car design, in particular to that of the 70s ranging from Bertone to Italdesign; a geometric, essential but also evocative type of design that perfectly matches the lines of his collections. It all started a few years ago with the launch of a three-hands-timepiece and a two-counter-chronograph; the Monoposto and the Prototype, respectively - the perfect union between reliable mechanics and Bradley's light pencil.
The originality of the idea behind the Autodromo is the creation of watches that tell us about the history of engines without necessarily being the result of a partnership. Nevertheless, a few years after the launch of the first collection, the interest of big car brands - i.e. Ford - for Autodromo started growing exponentially; so much that the king of Detroit has now become quite close to this small atelier and they even launched the first themed collections. My linking together this brand and this new Horbiter® section has therefore come quite naturally. Many of the brands that we have been reviewing on these digital pages have already struck a close link with manufacturers from the world of engines, but the Autodromo is not only strictly interconnected to engines, but also dashboard instruments and Bradley's extraordinary passion for this sector (he usually drives a Ferrari Dino) and no other watch better than the Autodromo could put together the fans of both worlds.
The Autodromo Ford GT Endurance Chronograph Le Mans 2016 is one of the examples of this collaboration; it is a watch that breaks free from the concept of vintage minimalism that this manufacturer is quite attached to. It is a timepiece with few colour shades and a combination of the brand's famous panda dials, an object that blends in perfectly with the brand image of a manufacturer and of its historic racing cars.
You can immediately recognize an Autodromo by its strap with a cannellè motif that reminds us of the design and the seams present on 70s sports cars' seats (simply take a look at those of a Daytona or a Miura to understand what I am referring to) that some other big watch brands have obviously copied. This timepiece comes with a steel case featuring a tachometric scale (in miles) on a satin surface, two counters on a base that sports the colours of the Ford GT; the 2016 winner of the 24 Hours of Le Mans (50 years after its first historic victory in La Sarthe).
As I said before, this is a chronograph that adds in a new dimension to the brand; a collaboration project with the big names of car racing. The choice of the calibers was very careful and selective from the very beginning; the brand opted for mechanical and quartz calibers of Japanese production (that is to say the best in class both when it comes to the quality and the reliability of Japanese mechanics). Moreover, I believe that this choice also aims at breaking away from the supply dependence coming from faraway Switzerland; a process that has become increasingly more and more complicated. Those of you, who are familiar with the world of watch-making will certainly know that the Seiko and Miyota (Citizen) calibers are ever-lasting and very precise and the same goes for the Seiko VK64 Hybrid Meca-Quartz caliber (I own a Seiko equipped with the exact same caliber hosted within the Autodromo Ford GT Endurance Chronograph Le Mans 2016).
(Photo credit: courtesy of Autodromo)
Gaetano C @Horbiter-R