885107 ‘Exotic Nina’ Universal Genève Compax
There aren’t many chronographs which can be described honestly as on par with a Paul Newman. This one can be, and it’s an order of magnitude less dear as well. It’s not just that it’s a Valjoux 72, hundreds of references were powered by one. It’s a Singer-made dial. It’s exotic. It was produced in pitiful numbers. Plus the case is just 36mm with a bakelite bezel in blue. It has all the charm, all the rarity, and from a name arguably as storied. The 885107 ‘Exotic Nina’ is, without question, one of the rarest and most desirable UG chronographs out there.
UG’s ref. 885103/02, the traditional ‘Nina Rindt’, was famed for both its attractive panda dial and the fact that it was photographed, famously, looking extremely beautiful on the wrist of Nina Rindt, supermodel and widow to the late F1 Champion Jochen Rindt. Its rise to fame has been a gradual one over the past two decades, mainly appreciated by watch collectors past a certain level of nerd (all of us). While many dismissed the UG Compax for being too simplistic and a bit too Daytona-adjacent (as if that were a bad thing) in the last century, scholarship and a general increasing appreciation for the excellence UG achieved through their pre-quartz-crisis run has seen the Nina Rindt become a highly collected cult classic in recent years. But this is no ordinary Nina.
Most cite that fewer than twenty of these watches exist today with about a half-dozen documented, making the 885107 or 885108 (inverse blue color schemes of the same exotic configuration) considerably rarer than the vast majority of Paul Newman references. Its dial is markedly distinct from usual Singer production too: a silver T section for its subdials, radially brushed background, bright blue subdials and seconds track, plus stark red hour accents. In addition, the subdial handset is different in shape to everything except other Ninas.
Somehow, on this example, a caseback engraving has survived all these years. It reads ‘Paulsen-Webber Award For Outstanding Practical Seamanship Presented to Midshipman Carl M. McCormick June 21, 1974’. The market doesn’t tend to present these very often, for the right collector this is an absolute dream in UG format. Yes, the Paul Newman is in a different league entirely and has a wider, deeper history. But in sheer cool factor or interest, this really does give it a run for its money . . .which is not a lot all considered.
And this example is as good as it gets. The caseback engraving is there yes, but so are the extremely shallow serial and reference number.s That is when you know a UG case is sharp. The dial is perfect, truly. All tritium an even cream. No cracking in the bakelite. It comes with an original UG strap, buckle, and filled-out warranty certificate from a well-regarded Miami retailer.
Find this 885107 here from Menta Watches for 37500 USD.
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