Yema Rallye "Mario Andretti" Sold
Case: All Stainless Steel
Dimensions: 38mm excluding original crown
Caliber: Valjoux 7730 Manual Wind
Strap: 19mm leather handmade strap
(exact reproduction of the original one)
Today, Yema Chronographs are very desirable, and there’s no wonder why. Yema is a French brand born in 1948 that quickly became famous as it is said that they launched the first automatic chronograph manufactured in their home country. With dimensions and shape similar to some “big” watches like the Heuer Autavia or early Speedys and racing dials, these chronographs have rapidly become a sought after collectors.
The Yema Rallye was likely introduced in the late 1960s and is a 2-register chronograph fitted with Valjoux 773x calibers. Early versions came with plain black and white dials with red racing stripes similar as old dashboards and Valjoux 7730 and later versions with Valjoux 7733. Mario Andretti is one of racing’s all-time greats. He has the distinction of winning a F1 World Championship, the NASCAR Daytona 500, a class win at Le Mans, and the Indy 500. Andretti competed in the Indy 500 many times, until 1994, and came close to winning it on several occasions, but his lone win came all the way back in 1969. What was Mario wearing during this win? It seems he was wearing a Yema Rallye…
This Rallye, circa late 1960s, with serial 60018 dating it as part of the early batches of production, is a truly collectible piece amongst collectors, especially between Heuer fans, and one of the nicest examples we’ve ever come across. This example has the desired 39mm w/o crown all stainless steel First Execution Heuer Autavia 2446 type of case, sharp and unpolished, but adding a mint (all the minor scratches or tiny spots you might see in the pictures are on the crystal, not the dial) exotic colorful Racing dial with all original lume. It also has a tachymeter sportive bezel, in great shape with hardly any scratches at all, and waterproof case back. It is powered by the robust Valjoux 7730 which is running great. All the hands are original and in very good condition, with no loss paint and conserving all the original lume (something really hard to find on these as they did deteriorate a lot). Acrylic crystal in good condition with minor scratches. All original pushers and flat-step crown.
It comes suited on a handmade leather strap which is an exact reproduction (taking exact measurements of an original example) of the original racing strap that these Yema’s came on. This strap was computer designed by ourselves with the help of a Yema collector (@dutchwatchclassics on Instagram) and his original strap and produced by a custom strapmaker.