a Poor Man’s Camaro, Baylor dato Chrono Reference 4210, with stainless steel case, is approximately 37mm (excluding crown and pushers), this 1960 Baylor Sporty Chronographs produced for the jeweler Zales.
In the late 1960s, Baylor-branded watches used many of the same parts as the Heuer Autavias and Carreras.
While many of these Baylor-branded Heuers were based on more popular models like the Autavia Reference 2446C with a funky, retro vibe, the Heuer Camaro with its dependable manual-wind Valjoux movements exudes ’70s style.
But the timing of its release in 1968, Just one year before the introduction of the game-changing Caliber 11 Chronomatic movement saw it overshadowed by the Autavias and Carreras with automatic movements.
It’s even rumored that as Heuer began to shift its focus toward automatic chronographs with new cases and dials. Zales was able to snatch up parts for pennies on the dollar.
The result was a small array of watches that looked and felt just like Heuers. However, they’re perhaps undeserving of the moniker. Because of their solid cases and dependable movements are the same as those used by Heuer.
In fact, Heuer manufactured pieces to be sold at a more affordable price through large retailers like Sears & Roebuck and Zales, under names like Tradition or Baylor.
In the 1960s and 1970s, the fashion was for sporty chronographs in sturdy cases. Some of the most renowned racers and teams of the day regularly seen sporting Heuer’s Carrera, Monza, and Autavia models.
However, then, as now, their price points were out of reach of many average enthusiasts, giving rise to what we now refer to as “Poor Man’s Heuers.” These watches have picked up quite a bit of traction in recent years, as collectors realize the value of these stunning and sporty watches.