Tag Heuer releases a new Monaco Chronograph dubbed the Night Driver in time for the Singapore Grand Prix, the only race in F1 which is at night.
Press Release details with commentary in italics.
New: TAG Heuer Monaco Chronograph Night Driver
The TAG Heuer Monaco Chronograph Night Driver is available now at a retail price of CHF 9,300. Limited edition of 600 pieces, each individually engraved.
The very popular TAG Heuer Monaco Chronograph, an icon of its own right, gets an update in time for the Singapore Grand Prix – the only F1 race to be competed at night. To capture this night race spirit, the watch has full lume dial. In good lighting, the dial looks rather monochromatic in shades of grey, matching nicely to the dark grey case with its dark grey crown and pushers. The main dial is a darker hue than the sub-dials and dial background.
An in the dark, the light portions of the dial turn into lume, showing in good contrast to the dark parts which remain without fluorescence. The imagery which pops into mind is the lighted dials on the instrument panel of a car at night.
The rest of the watch is a standard Monaco Chronograph, with the Heuer 02 automatic caliber installed. The case id black DLF over titanium to give it that dark look.
In terms of pricing, the novelty’s full lume extracts a premium over the standard titanium model Ref. BL2180.FC6497, which carries a retail price of CHF 8k.
For over 50 years, the Monaco chronograph has been the ultimate driver’s watch. TAG Heuer now introduces the Monaco Chronograph Night Driver, a Limited Edition that is a modern and innovative tribute to the racing spirit of this collection as well as its iconic Monaco Blue and captures the magic of driving a sports car on the open road at night. It also features a new technical innovation for TAG Heuer – a fully luminescent dial for even better legibility.
Those who enjoy the intense feel of the road and the car and find the limit of their own capabilities will be captivated by a new limited edition of the Monaco chronograph, the new TAG Heuer Monaco Chronograph Night Driver. Inspired by the midnight blue, charcoal grey and matte black dials of the iconic vintage Monacos, this newest edition uses today’s materials to build an instrument that enhances the experience and performance of those who take to the roads especially at night.
Driving at Night – the Road, the Car and the Watch
There is something magical about driving in the dark of night. Take away the distractions of roadside scenery and the bright sky, and the driver is left alone with the feel of the road and the car. The driver feels the car and the road more intensely than when driving in the daylight, sensing the power and agility of their car with their hands, feet and back. Every nuance of the road and the car registers in the driver’s body and mind, as there is a purity in being alone with the car and the road. The rest of the world seems to vanish. Without the extraneous inputs, the lights, sounds and other sensations felt by the driver take on a new intensity.
More than ever, the driver relies on their eyes and their instruments for critical inputs. Dashboard instruments glow through the night, indicating the car’s speed and monitoring its critical mechanical conditions (temperatures and pressures). Another instrument becomes especially important in the dark – the driver’s chronograph. The chronograph tracks the current time, while allowing to measure the time of a lap, interval or other event. As with the dashboard instruments, at night, legibility is critical to provide the driver with accurate information in an instant.
The TAG Heuer Monaco Chronograph Night Driver Limited Edition
Since its introduction in 1969, the TAG Heuer Monaco has been the ultimate chronograph for racers, and today TAG Heuer introduces a Limited Edition Monaco Chronograph Night Driver as the essential instrument for driving in the dark of night. The newest Monaco employs its unique “circle in the square” two-piece dial construction to provide instant readings for the driver. At night, the deep grey “circle” at the center of the dial provides strong contrast with the bright blue Super-LumiNova® finish of the hour, minute, and chronograph seconds hands, as well as bright dots that mark the hours. Even the hash-marks that indicate the minutes / seconds glow brightly, allowing the driver to take precise readings.
It is the “squares” of the Monaco Night Driver, that transform the new chronograph into the perfect driver’s instrument, while providing two different and complementary looks capturing the mood of darkness or light. As the day turns to night, the exterior of the dial is transformed from a cool, light grey to a glowing vivid blue, with
black-lacquered indexes marking the hours. The chronograph registers are transformed to this same glowing blue, providing vivid contrast with the black markings for minutes and hours, and the hands for the chronograph minutes and hours counters.
This fully luminescent dial is a true technical achievement for TAG Heuer and enables even better and more powerful legibility on the roads. By harnessing the capabilities of Super- LumiNova®, the timepiece is able to expand its luminosity across a broader surface area, allowing the dial to remain prominently visible in the dark for 3 hours after being fully charged.
The Monaco Chronograph Night Driver Limited Edition also evokes some legendary Monaco chronographs from TAG Heuer’s heritageportfolio. The dial of the very first Monaco chronograph from 1969, worn by Steve McQueen in the movie Le Mans, was called “Midnight Blue”. Now, over 50 years later, TAG Heuer uses modern materials to capture the deep blue glow of the night sky. Other vintage Monacochronographs used “charcoal grey” for their dials, with contrasting darker registers, and seen in daylight the new “Night Driver” pays tribute to this palette.
Legibility is essential for the driver’s chronograph, but steering a car through the night requires a second attribute – durability. Here too, the new Monaco Chronograph Night Driver uses modern materials to create the perfect instrument for the racer. The case is built of Grade 5 titanium, coated in black DLC (diamond-like carbon) material, with the light weight of the watch ensuring comfort over the hours. The DLC coating of the case will stand up well to its intended use as the racer’s tool, and high-use elements of the chronograph – the pushers and crown – incorporate this same black coating.
Each TAG Heuer timepiece must meet the strict requirements of robustness, precision and quality. This is why Grade 5 titanium has been chosen for the Night Driver, a first for a Monaco chronograph. Offering toughness and endurance, this material allows a combination of fine-brushed and polished finishes, which embody TAG Heuer savoir-faire and enhance the versatile look of this chronograph.
The use of TAG Heuer’s in-house Heuer 02 movement to power the Monaco Chronograph Night Driver is yet another essential element of the new instrument’s durability. The Heuer 02 movement uses a traditional column wheel to reliably actuate the chronograph, while the movement’s 80 hours power reserve will keep the Night Driver running over the course of a weekend of racing. The sapphire caseback displays the blue printing on the black oscillating mass, as well as the blue column wheel, extending this palette from the dial of the chronograph.
The Monaco Chronograph Night Driver Limited Edition incorporates a calfskin strap, with the alternating large and small perforations and bright white stitching along the edge of the strap also evoking Heuer racing chronographs of the 1960s and 70s.
TAG Heuer will present the Monaco Chronograph Night Driver Limited Edition in a dedicated packaging that evokes the racing heritage of the Monaco collection in a “nomad” travel pouch.
TAG Heuer Monaco Chronograph Night Driver Specifications
Calibre Heuer 02, Automatic
Hours, minutes, seconds, date, chronograph
Anthracite, grey opalin, grained dial Blue luminescent outer dial
– 3o’clock:anthraciteluminescentminutechronographcounter;black lacquered hand
– 9o’clock:anthraciteluminescenthourchronographcounter;black lacquered hand
Black gold-plated indexes
Black gold-plated hour and minute hands with blue Super-LumiNova® Grey lacquered central hand
Anthracite TAG HEUER printed logo
6 o’clock angled date
MONACO AUTOMATIC printed
39 mm diameter
Black DLC grade 5 titanium polished, fine brushed case Domed, beveled sapphire crystal
Sapphire caseback with limited numbered XXX/600 Water resistance: 100 meters
Dedicated oscillating weight and column wheel
Black perforated calfskin strap, light grey stitching
Black DLC grade 5 titanium folding clasp with double safety push-buttonsDimensionsLug-to-lug: 47,4 mm Thickness: 14,7 mm