Within the large and high-profile area of mainstream luxurious dive watches, the TAG Heuer Aquaracer has been one thing of a perennial darkish horse. With a extra modernist design philosophy and with out the prolonged heritage surrounding of a few of its rival nameplates, it’s a line that has not often led discussions surrounding divers and even the model’s personal watches regardless of a monitor report of high quality and infrequently spectacular worth. As TAG Heuer shapes its core product strains for the 2020s, nonetheless, the marque has closely reinvented the core Aquaracer collection with a design that doubles down on a number of defining Aquaracer cues whereas softening others for a extra balanced and mature look. The brand new TAG Heuer Aquaracer Skilled 300 collection sports activities 5 distinctive 43mm fashions, together with the classic impressed restricted version TAG Heuer Aquaracer Skilled 300 Tribute to Ref. 844, that convey a clear and distinctively angular new ethos to the collection.
The 43mm case of the brand new TAG Heuer Aquaracer Skilled 300 collection continues to be immediately recognizable as an Aquaracer, however considerably refines the look over earlier generations. The general design continues to be angular and fashionable, with historically curved varieties translated into flat planes and abrupt corners. The place this new case actually units itself aside from its predecessors is thru the case sides, the place the totally polished flat floor has been modified to a brushed end with a large polished chamfer working from lug to lug. This breaks up the case sides visually and creates the phantasm of a thinner case profile in photos, though the precise case thickness is simply marginally diminished by zero.35mm to 12.2mm total. Like with final 12 months’s revised Carrera Sport Chronograph, most of the geometric modifications listed here are designed to make the large-on-paper 43mm diameter put on extra compact than the numbers counsel, and a big part of that is the brand new lug geometry. Along with the slimming addition of the chamfer, the lugs themselves are markedly shorter than the earlier era, which can seemingly result in a extra compact footprint on the wrist for many wearers.
The opposite main visible change for this new era comes courtesy of the Aquaracer’s signature 12 sided bezel. The bezel itself is now totally coin edged for a less complicated look and improved grip, whereas the inserts in black, blue, or inexperienced at the moment are ceramic throughout the road. This transfer to ceramic brings the Aquaracer extra in step with its fashionable competitors, however along with the brand new bezel edge reframes a lot of the design as a way more orthodox affair. The general impression from the case design is much less the yachting-inflected mixture of luxurious and aggression of earlier generations, and extra of a low-poly tackle basic diver cues. That is charming and charismatic in its personal approach, like a dive watch rendered with the graphical functionality of a PlayStation 2, and may enchantment to a wider viewers than the idiosyncratic really feel of earlier fashions. TAG Heuer itself leans into this angular computer-graphic ethos with its revised caseback, which revamps the Aquaracer’s signature dive helmet engraving with a sharply edged new look. The one curved strains on this new case come by way of the brand new cyclops date magnifier on prime of the sapphire crystal at 6 o’clock.
Whereas the core three fashions of the brand new assortment render this new case type in a mix of polished and sporty brushed stainless-steel, the inexperienced dial variant units itself aside with a matte bead blasted end in darkish Grade 2 titanium. For the restricted version Aquaracer Skilled 300 Tribute to Ref. 844, TAG Heuer retains a suitably old-school pairing of black bezel and stainless-steel case. No matter materials or ending, all new fashions within the TAG Heuer Aquaracer Skilled 300 collection are water-resistant to a strong 300 meters.
Just like the instances, the dials of the brand new TAG Heuer Aquaracer Skilled 300 line preserve recognizable Aquaracer cues whereas evolving the general design considerably. The sunburst dials in black, blue, inexperienced, and shiny silver maintain the Aquaracer’s trademark horizontal engraved strains, however right here the ridged sections are wider and fewer quite a few for a cleaner really feel. TAG Heuer unifies the angular design of the case with the dial by way of its new set of utilized diver indices, which substitute the basic spherical markers with octagonal items. Mixed with the beveled wedge-shaped indices at 12 o’clock, three o’clock, and 9 o’clock, these new markers give a contact of distinctive character to the road and additional promote the funky low-resolution laptop generated impact. The handset can be extensively reworked, changing the complicated paddle designs of the earlier era with a basic set of Roman swords. The seconds hand retains the Aquaracer’s distinctive wedge formed tip, nonetheless, with a punch of vibrant yellow that provides a dramatic visible spotlight. TAG Heuer prioritizes simple legibility with its Tremendous-LumiNova lume fill right here, because the important minutes and seconds fingers instantly stand out with a blue glow in opposition to the inexperienced used for the remainder of the dial. Stability is a visible precedence for these new dials as properly, as TAG Heuer strikes the date window to six o’clock to protect symmetry.
As a way to echo the basic Heuer Ref. 844 diver from 1978, the dial of the restricted version TAG Heuer Aquaracer Skilled 300 Tribute to Ref. 844 differs sharply from its stablemates. The engraved sunburst dial floor is ditched in favor of a closely grained matte black right here, whereas the lume fill is a heat khaki fauxtina. The Tribute to Ref. 844 provides an additional splash of shade to the look with an inner 24 hour scale in deep crimson, calling again to the 1978 mannequin whereas including some helpful operate. These modifications add as much as a markedly completely different impact from common manufacturing fashions, creating an intriguing mix of outdated and new that reads much less as a classic reissue than a retro-modern revival.
All fashions within the TAG Heuer Aquaracer Skilled 300 line are powered by the ETA primarily based Calibre 5 automated motion. Whereas a dependable and simply maintained powerplant, this motion could grow to be one thing of an Achilles heel for the road as most of its opponents at the moment sport in-house designs. The Caliber 5 is a bit lengthy within the tooth in comparison with a lot of the section, and its efficiency is in step with its age at a stable however unspectacular 42 hour energy reserve with a 28,800 bph beat charge.
TAG Heuer provides the Aquaracer Skilled 300 collection with a refreshed variant of its three hyperlink oyster type bracelet. In comparison with the earlier model, this new mannequin is extra flowing and streamlined, with much less emphasis on blocky angular parts and wider central hyperlinks. The clasp has additionally been closely reworked, with a brand new sliding micro-adjustment system. The core stainless-steel fashions render this new bracelet in totally brushed stainless-steel, whereas the inexperienced dial titanium variant naturally opts for an identical matte titanium model. For the Tribute to Ref. 844, TAG Heuer pairs the watch with a contemporary curved finish tackle a classic huge gap rubber tropic strap, cleverly integrating the look into the general design with octagonal holes instead of the unique spherical type.
With a reprofiled case, improved supplies, and a clear, cohesive new look, the TAG Heuer Aquaracer Skilled 300 collection brings the model’s core diver line in sync with its extra refined fashionable model DNA. Though most fashions within the line might be common manufacturing items, the TAG Heuer Aquaracer Skilled 300 Tribute to Ref. 844 is restricted to solely 844 examples. All customary manufacturing fashions within the TAG Heuer Aquaracer Skilled 300 line might be accessible by way of approved sellers in June 2021, whereas the restricted version Tribute to Ref. 844 might be accessible beginning in September 2021. MSRP for these new TAG Heuer Aquaracer Skilled 300 fashions begins at €2,850, whereas the inexperienced dial titanium mannequin and Tribute to Ref. 844 are priced at €four,000 and €four,100, respectively. For extra particulars, please go to the brand’s website.