Timex was founded way back in 1854, which means the brand has a whole lot of history to work with. And for the past couple of years, the Connecticut-based company has been pushing hard to show watch fans just how valuable those extensive archives can be, reissuing classic timepieces and letting vintage designs inspire new ones.
“When you go to the archive, it’s a joy. It’s discovery,” says Timex designer Giorgio Galli. “Every time, I would like to reissue everything I see.” Of course, Galli and the rest of the team can’t actually reissue every watch. So it all comes down to choosing styles that are as relevant to the brand’s history as they are to modern tastes. The newly reissued Q Timex delivers on both fronts—and we’ve got the exclusive ticket for you to shop it a full day early.
Originally released in the 1970s, the Q was a major step forward for Timex. It represented the brand’s entree into the quartz revolution, when mechanical movements gave way to more-accurate, quartz-driven ones. From the modern perspective—at a time when quartz is an affordable standard—this might not seem so shocking. But at the time it was a huge deal.
Now, Galli explains, having an automatic movement is a selling point for discerning watch fans. “In those days, it was quartz.” To pay homage to the era, Timex kept the original “Q” logo for the watch, situated just under the 12 o’clock marker. And that’s not the only element that’s true to the archival version: The 38mm case size, woven metal bracelet, and functional battery hatch on the caseback are all in line with the first iteration of the Q Timex.
“We fell in love with it immediately,” Galli explains. “The 1970s style was speaking well to what we have on our line right now. It fits what we’re doing, and it fits what we’ve done so far.” Of course, this being 2019, the watch is updated with a modern quartz movement and a stainless steel case and band. The idea isn’t to simply recreate an old watch, but to channel its DNA into something that works right now.
“We’re trying to take the brand to the future, not just use our past,” Galli says. “But the fact that we have such a great history—expertise, craftsmanship—it’s vital for a watch brand. At our price point, there aren’t that many brands that can say they have such a great past.”
About that price point: The Q Timex costs just $179. In the world of watches—where things can easily tick into the quadruple digits—that’s a damn steal. Especially when you consider the throwback styling and the history behind it. The Q isn’t a dive watch, exactly—more of an “urban diver,” as Galli says. But the red-and-blue bezel, the hits of gold, and that distinctive bracelet are hallmarks of that design tradition, and enough to catch pretty much anyone’s eye.
It’s been fascinating, discovering this American icon,” says Galli, who’s based in Milan, and part of the Italian Timex team. He doesn’t underestimate the power of having pieces like the Q in the archives. “To be able to work on this and shape some of the brand’s future, it’s definitely exciting.”