The Mido Multi-Centerchrono is in my opinion, one of the most elegant chronographs ever produced. A combination of details that I’ll mention all add up, making for a beautiful and quintessentially mid-century styled wristwatch.
Produced in the 1940s, the Mido Multi-Centerchrono was unique in many regards where most strikingly, was it’s centralised layout. Traditionally, chronographs would have a subdial to provide a minutes counter but in the case of this Mido, it came with a central minutes totaliser, meaning that the 4th hand you see on the dial actually counts the minutes when the chronograph is running. This was achieved by using a base Valjoux VZ movement (the predecessor to the Valjoux 23) and modifying it into what Mido called the Cal. 1300. Not only is the design unusual, but it has the added aesthetics of looking like a split-seconds chronograph.
Furthermore, the Multi-Centerchrono’s case with it’s sharp angled lugs and sunburst engraved pushers were produced by Taubert et Fils, the successors to the case maker François Borgel who incidentally produced cases for Patek Philippe. If anyone thinks these look familiar it’s because the exact same pushers were used on Patek Philippe’s first waterproof chronograph, the Ref. 1463. These were also used on the Movado M90 and M95s. Adding to this, the case was made to be anti-magnetic by using an inner cage composed of the dial, a ring surrounding the movement and a dust cap.
The Mido Multi-Centerchrono came in many dial variants, with this example having one of the more attractive and rarer versions. A two-tone, multi-scale dial with a telemeter, tachymeter, 24 hour display and minuted counter, the information is all laid out in perfect proportion, separated through colours and sizes. Furthermore, interestingly this Mido has a Portuguese import stamp on the top left lug.
What all of this translates to, is an incredibly beautiful, high quality and complicated watch at a very accessible price point.