Some marriages are simply meant to be. While the new TAG Heuer x Porsche Carrera watch has been developed in the greatest secrecy, now it has been launched the reaction will likely be, ‘But, of course!’
This is not least because, while this is the first watch collaboration between the two, these famous firms have worked together for decades. So much so you find yourself wondering how come they haven’t co-created a timepiece before. After all, the TAG Heuer Carrera chronograph and the Porsche Carrera car models are even named after the same Mexican road race, the gruelling Carrera Panamericana of the 1950s.
Up to now, though, the relationship between watch maker and car maker has been based on happenstance and mutual admiration rather than anything more formal. Take, for example, the way in which legendary Swiss racer – a driver for Porsche and a Porsche dealer – Jo Siffert wore a Heuer logo on his race suit and how this prompted Steve McQueen to do the same in the 1971 film Le Mans, in which he drove a Porsche 917. The Hollywood star also wore the square Heuer Monaco chronograph in the movie.
But now, Frédéric Arnault, TAG Heuer’s CEO, says it is the right time to make the relationship official. ‘We have a common history and share values, of course, but more importantly we share an attitude. With this alliance TAG Heuer and Porsche come together officially after decades of close encounters.’
Importantly, both parties were determined that this would not be just another one-off watch-and-motoring link-up. The new watch is, therefore, just the first step in a relationship that will see developments in watches and cars over the next few years, as well as official partnerships with the Porsche GT Team World Endurance Championship, the Porsche Carrera Cups, the Porsche Esports Supercup and the Porsche Classic races of vintage motors.
The TAG Heuer x Porsche Carrera is as sleek as any performance car. The 44mm case is in polished steel with a black ceramic tachymeter fixed bezel inscribed with the Porsche logo in red at 1 o’clock. The font of the logo itself is referenced in the white 60-second indexes set on a grey asphalt dial, as a nod to the surfaces of the world’s greatest racetracks. The steel crown at 3 o’clock also complements the logo with its band of red.
The indexes are plated in black gold with white Super-LumiNova®. The classic TAG Heuer Carrera inset dials feature a distinctive red tip to the hands on the second and hour chronograph counters.
Styling aside, as in a Porsche, the power “under the bonnet” is at the heart of the watch’s performance. The movement is the in-house automatic chronograph Heuer 02 manufacture with its 80-hour power reserve and its commitment to the greatest precision.
The piece comes either on a black calf leather strap as a nod to a Porsche interior or the classic H-shape steel Carrera sports chronograph bracelet. Last but not least, this very special edition is housed in a suitably special package. The black watch box features both brands’ logos, while inside is a black travel pouch with a classic Porsche-red interior.
The two firms will also be joining forces on the green, for the Porsche European Open and the Porsche Golf Cup World Final, and on the court, for the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix. And, of course, there will almost certainly be another collaborative timepiece in the near future. But for that we will have to wait and see.
In this case, paradoxically, speed is not of the essence.
Robert Johnston Journalist and former style director of GQ