“Ambition is a dream with a V8 engine.” – Elvis Presley
Okay, it’s not exactly related to the watch in question but you gotta’ admit, the man’s got a point. A damn good one, in fact. While there are plenty of engine configurations around, the good ol’ V8 is, arguably, one of the most iconic layouts. You can thank ‘Murican media for that, folks.
Actually, allow me to double back a bit on what I just said. It is somewhat related to the watch we’re looking at today, the Tissot V8 Quartz Chronograph (reference no. T106.417.16.032.00). As mentioned earlier, the V8 engine is quite popular, right? Well, so is the chronograph. In my humble opinion, only the dive watch comes close to being as popular as far as tool watches are concerned. While I’m sure there are hundreds more complications and layouts within the horological universe, the chronograph is probably the first watch that comes to mind when you ask anyone what a “sporty” timepiece should look like.
And what a looker we have here. Yes, she isn’t a mechanical timepiece but that shouldn’t put you off. Not at all. Ask any decent collector and they’ll tell you that quartz has its merits. Keeping with the theme so far, it’s also a pretty damn popular power source for the vast majority of affordable watches on sale today. Not everyone who wants a ‘Swiss Made‘ chronograph has to put up with a five-figure price tag for one.
With the (deep breath) Tissot V8 Quartz Chronograph, you’ll be getting more than just the ‘Swiss Made’ recognition.
“That looks like an interesting dial, no?”
Oh, yes. Amongst a sea of white, black, silver and blue dials, the copper-ivory shade of the Tissot V8 Quartz Chronograph certainly stands out for the right reasons. Even better is the gradient effect Tissot has opted for with the shading going from intense near the edge of the dial to an almost-white in the middle of the dial. However, things take a bit of a downturn elsewhere on the dial when I had a closer look.
The minute track, chronograph sub-dials (running seconds, 30-minute counter and 1/10th second counter) and font were printed instead of applied. The same goes for the Arabic numerals albeit with a slightly different, thicker application. Now, you may think I’m nitpicking but getting the best bang for the buck is my priority so I reckon it’s only right to call out Tissot for this. Especially so when you’re charging RM1,800 at list price for the watch.
Take away the ‘1’ from the price tag and it’ll make things more tolerable. You do, however, get a bit of lume on the (skeletonized) hands and at the base of the hour markers. One nice touch is the T-shaped counterweight at the end of the chronograph seconds hand. As for the date window, it’s situated at 6 o’clock which helps a great deal in dial symmetry. Nothing special about it though so don’t go looking for beveled edges and whatnot.
“And all this is boxed inside a pretty chunky-looking case…”
That’s one way to put it. Dimensions, of which I measured personally, are as follow. The Tissot V8 Quartz Chronograph has a case diameter of 43.3 mm (excluding the crown) and a lug to lug measurement of 48 mm. Lug width is 22 mm, thickness is 11.6 mm and weight (strap included) is 80 g. The stainless steel case features both brushed and polished finishing which always manages to give off a good mix of sporty and dressy vibes. However, the bold aesthetics of this watch would probably be further highlighted with a fully-brushed finish, I reckon.
Elsewhere, the rather large T-shaped pushers and pronounced crown guard (which hides a signed crown within) certainly fuel the racy aesthetics that much more. Also, a sapphire crystal is featured here so that’s another point in Tissot’s favour. Now, moving on to the next great aspect of this watch, the tachymeter bezel. In that lovely, lovely shade of British Racing Green.
To me, the combination of that gradient ivory-copper dial and green bezel is almost good enough a reason to go for this watch. Almost. Turning it around, affairs get a lot simpler. You’re greeted by a solid caseback with the usual smattering of text declaring the 100 m water resistance, the presence of a sapphire crystal and a huge ‘Tissot V8’ insignia right in the middle of it all.
Beneath that solid caseback lies the ETA G10.212 quartz chronograph movement with split/add timing capabilities.
“How does it wear? Is that strap any good?”
It wears a tad large for my 6-inch wrist, if I’m honest. Let’s be clear, those with larger wrists should be able to pull it off better than I ever can. At first glance, the stock leather strap appears to have a rally-esque appearance with its perforated surface but a closer look reveals that the holes aren’t completely punched through.
I’m not an expert in managing costs and product planning but I’m pretty damn sure that it couldn’t have cost a lot to supply the V8 Quartz Chronograph with a proper rally strap, holes and all, right? That niggle aside, the strap is indeed very pliable and comfortable. A stainless steel tang buckle with ‘Tissot’ engraved into it completes the look.
“Penny for your (final) thoughts?”
The Tissot V8 Quartz Chronograph. Where do I begin? It’s not a bad watch, but if you’re ever in the market for a chronograph within the same price range, have a look at the Bulova Lunar Pilot. A quick check online shows that prices for these are hovering about the RM2,000 mark. Don’t need a tachymeter bezel and want something even more of a conversation starter? Go for a geek’s left-field option, the Seagull 1963, which costs around RM1,500 to RM1,700. With that said, if you absolutely must have a Swiss chronograph with considerable wrist presence that costs less than RM2,000, this is a good candidate.
Bonus points if you’re not keen on the quibbles of owning a mechanical watch and worrying about it dying on you after two days. Would I get one for myself? If it was priced lower, yes. If not, give it a beating heart (mechanical movement) and I might just say yes.
*This loaner unit was provided by Timekeeper Malaysia. For the full Tissot range, check out their online store at timekeeper.store here.
It’s a lovely watch, I prefer the gold/brass patina affect dial. I think it works very well with the watch. I’m glad they don’t make a bracelet for this, because this watch is screaming to put on a nato strap, I know, i know. Racing watches don’t do natos, but the colouring on it almost makes it a crave a khaki or vintage bond nato.
My niggle with this is the hands. The basic T shape leaves a lot to be desired. Why do a T if your’re not going to accentuate it with detail, furthermore the hands look a bit flat. Is it too much to ask for a thick bevelled hands instead of some cheap 100 micro hands lasered out of sheet metal.
You’ve got a point with the NATO straps, I’ll give you that! I think racing-esque watches/chronographs tend to be strap monsters so it makes sense that we can see them on NATOs. A khaki one would do wonders to match the shade of the dial!
As for the hands, well… guess Tissot had to build it to a price.