After three years of quartz watches for Max Verstappen, covered here, here and here, his TAG Heuer special edition has now come of age. And despite the autumn rain and a very disappointing race last weekend for the Dutchman, spirits were high during the presentation of a watch that will most likely be sold out even before it hits the shelves. Meet the new TAG Heuer chronograph Max Verstappen Special Edition 2019 (finally mechanical).
It doesn’t really matter anymore how well Formula 1 driver Max Verstappen performs; people will line up to catch a glimpse of him everywhere he goes. Especially in his home country, the Netherlands, where he lightened up the quintessentially Dutch autumn weather with a flash visit to present his latest watch, the TAG Heuer Formula 1 Calibre 16 Max Verstappen Special Edition 2019.
During the last F1 race, the Dutchman was torpedoed off the track by young competitor Charles Leclerc for no particular reason, and Verstappen was arriving fresh from the plane back home. So yes, most of the talk was about how moody the racing driver would be on arrival.
Turned out, he wasn’t. Or at least not visibly. Max Verstappen told fans and reporters, who had arrived in large numbers, that he had his eyes on the next race. And of course, at his watch. “To me, it looks great,” he said about the new piece. “I’m really happy that TAG Heuer added the automatic movement as it feels like a good step forward, as we say in Formula 1.”
Automatic chronograph with a twist
After 3 years of quartz, Max finally gets a mechanical chronograph LE.
So what’s the big deal about this watch? This is the first mechanical watch made for the Dutchman. The Max Verstappen Special Edition 2019 is based on the already existing Formula 1 chronograph. Inside ticks the TAG Heuer automatic movement calibre 16, whose origins are more widely known as the Valjoux 7750 ETA-produced workhorse. That is not completely accurate, however, as TAG Heuer also uses Sellita SW500 movements.
So that means this is an automatic chronograph with a frequency of 28,800 vibrations per hour (4Hz), date indication, a 42-hour power reserve and three counters (at 12, 6 and 9 o’clock). It comes in a 44 mm steel case, that has polished and brushed surfaces.
Red racing details
The most striking detail on this special edition is to be seen on the bezel, which is decorated with that famous name in red engraving: Max Verstappen. The screwed-down caseback also shows that this is not an ordinary piece: it is engraved with the production number. The Aston Martin Red Bull Racing team logo and the starting number of Max Verstappen underpinned by the chequered flag are also engraved on the caseback. The case is water-resistant to 200 metres (20 bar). One more racing detail is seen on the dial, which says “Formula 1”.
The TAG Heuer Formula 1 Calibre 16 Max Verstappen has a black dial with applied indices with red details. More red is seen on the hands and on one of the pushers and the crown. The watch is quite expressive, thanks to more colour play on the dial and bracelet. The counters on 12 and 6 o’clock are silver and the one at nine o’clock is black. This same combination is seen on the bracelet. The bracelet consists of both polished fine-brushed stainless steel and ceramic links.
Price and availability
On the Dam, the square that is so central to the city that it gave Amsterdam its name, his appearance for once outshined the canals as attracting the most eyeballs. Even in the pouring rain, fans and watch lovers aligned side by side to see the racing driver reveal a watch that he says he would want to wear himself. To date, he is most often spotted with his TAG Heuer Carrera Calibre Heuer 01 Red Bull Racing Special Edition, but we will see if the new watch finds its way to his wrist as well.
All previous versions were sold out quite quickly, and expectations are this new watch will enjoy the same destiny. And even though it is a little more expensive than previous Max Verstappen Editions, the entire production is expected to sell out quite quickly – the name alone should take care of that. The watch comes in a limited run of 333 pieces, which refers to his starting number (33). The watch is available now and goes for a retail price of EUR 3,100 (taxes incl.).
More details at tagheuer.com.
This post first appeared on Monochrome Watches - An online magazine dedicated to fine watches.