Did you catch the Monaco Grand Prix on Sunday? While the attention was rightfully focused on the Formula 1 drivers battling it out on the track, Sergio Perez’s first-place finish wasn’t the only noteworthy story from the weekend. To mark the occasion, TAG Heuer released the new Monaco Grand Prix, a special edition of its longstanding series of watches inspired by the famous F1 street circuit. The new TAG Heuer Monaco reimagines the square-shaped watch with a new titanium case and details that recall its 1970s forebears.
From the beginning, TAG Heuer Monaco was a watch that broke the mold. It was introduced in 1969, and it departed from several watchmaking conventions. First and most obvious was the square case: It was a rare feature on chronograph timepieces, and it continues to be a hallmark of Monaco watches today. The ’69 original was also waterproof, featured an automatic movement (also rare for chronographs at the time), and stood out thanks to its blue dial with contrasting white and red accents.
Later editions of the Monaco would appear with a range of new colors. In the 1970s, TAG Heuer debuted a version with contrasting grey tones, and later that decade, the company created the famed “Dark Lord” Monaco. The watch got its name from its matte black case, which was paired with orange and red accents for good legibility—a nod to its roots as a tool watch for racing drivers.
Aesthetically, the new TAG Heuer Monaco is a riff on the Dark Lord, but it includes plenty of upgrades. The case is made from DLC-coated titanium for exceptional strength and durability with minimal weight. (Only one previous Monaco, a 2021 limited edition version, was made with titanium—and Max Verstappen wore it during his dominant 2021 F1 season.)
The new Monaco continues with the familiar “circle-in-the-square” layout of previous iterations, but there are new textures on offer: The main dial circle features a satin-brushed finish that contrasts with a rough sandblasted finish on the squared portion of the dial. According to TAG, that finish is inspired by the pavement of F1 tracks and the tires on F1 cars.
Against that rich black background, the bright red chronograph hands really pop, as do the rose gold main hands and indices. To make them even more legible, the hands are coated with Super-LumiNova for better visibility in the dark. Flip it over, and the see-through case back provides a glimpse of more rose gold accents. To top it off, this blacked-out watch is paired with a black alligator leather strap and a black titanium buckle. How’s that for a new Dark Lord?
TAG didn’t skimp on the mechanicals, either. The watch is powered by an in-house-made Heuer 02 automatic movement. It offers a hefty 80-hour power reserve, so you won’t have to worry about this watch stopping if you take it off for a few days. Just like a Formula 1 driver, it’s ready to go full tilt.
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