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Man in suit wearing TAG Heuer watch

TAG Heuer Watch Buying Guide 2019

Ernest Jones - Editor

TAG Heuer is a Swiss watch brand in the finest tradition of the Swiss Horology. With over a century-and-a-half of watchmaking tradition behind them and a long and prosperous future stretching ahead, TAG Heuer are one of the big names in quality precision watchmaking. Their slogan Don’t Crack Under Pressure suits their long and prestigious association with world class sporting events such as the Premier League. Their stylish watches are worn or have been worn by many famous people including “Thor” actor Chris Hemsworth, and top model Cara DeLevingne.

The history of TAG Heuer watches from 1860 to 2019

The tradition of Switzerland producing the finest watches is well known and the story of how that came about is worthy of an article itself. In 1860 Edouard Heuer (pron. Hoy-er) founded his eponymous watchmaking business in St-Imier, Switzerland becoming an integral and, indeed, formative part of that tradition.

He took out his first chronograph patent in 1882 and five years later patented the ‘oscillating pinion’, a component allowing chronographs to be stopped and started and still in an important component in chronographs to this day.

Edouard died in 1892 leaving the running of the business to his sons Jules-Edouard and Charles-Auguste. Heuer designed chronographs for aircraft, cars, and boats, patenting the “Time of Trip” dashboard chronograph in 1911. During the 1930s Heuer’s continued development of dashboard chronographs led to the Autavia (a portmanteau of Automobile and Aviation).

The company also produced the first wrist chronograph in 1914 and, in 1916 began manufacturing stopwatches. The Mikrograph measured time accurately to a hundredth of a second. Heuer timepieces were subsequently used for the 1920, 1924, and 1928 Olympics beginning the Heuer association with chronographs, stopwatches, and sporting event timing, which continues to this day.

Heuer was the first wristwatch in space, worn by John Glenn on the Mercury “Friendship 7” mission in 1962. Continuing the association with motorsport, Heuer produced the Carrera, emphatically designed for the toughest races, inspired by and named for the Carrera Panamericana, a dangerous road race that took place in Mexico. In 1969 Heuer, working with two other watch manufacturers, Breitling, and Buren, were part of a race to produce the first automatic chronograph. Although Zenith unveiled their prototype first, Heuer can claim victory with the first commercially produced product.

Heuer already enjoyed a strong association with sports, especially motorsports thanks to the Carrera, and this was further cemented in when actor Steve McQueen wore one, along with a Heuer logo racing suit, in the 1971 film “Le Mans”.

What is TAG Heuer known for?

TAG Heuer is most widely known for producing the finest and most accurate watches and chronographs with a particular association with top-level sports, hence TAG Heuer continuing as the official timekeepers for the Premier League. TAG Heuer remains at the cutting edge of chronograph design and technology. In 2004 for example they unveiled the Monaco V4 concept, a belt driven design inspired by car engines. Heuer has also pushed the boundaries of split-second time with the Mikrogirder which uses dual architecture making it capable of accurately recording down the 1/2,000th of a second

Is a Tag Heuer Watch a good investment?

Buying a watch as an investment is very different from buying stocks and shares. Although the same rule applies, that the value of any investment may go down as well as up, and past performance is not a guide to the future. Regardless of investment potential, when you buy TAG Heuer you have the benefit of an excellent watch. However, if you buy the watch and keep it unopened in a box then the only question you want to ask is, do TAG Heuer watches hold their value? Of course the answer to this depends to some extent on the model and on your instinct. Perhaps the most likely investment to pay off in this case is a limited-edition model but there really are no certainties in investing. TAG Heuer, like most premier watch manufacturers, release limited runs of certain models and the exclusivity of such editions may add to their potential for holding their price and perhaps gaining value. But in a very real sense, the value of a precision timepiece is as much in the use one gains from it and the kudos it affords the wearer as in its intrinsic value.

How long will a TAG Heuer watch last?

Take good care of your TAG Heuer watch and it will serve you well. Every TAG Heuer watch is built to exacting standards and should last for a great many years. Keep the exterior of the watch clean from day to day with a soft cloth or soft dry brush. Avoid getting leather or fabric straps wet if at all possible. Providing the seals have been properly maintained it is safe to clean the exterior of the watch with warm soapy water should the need arise.

How often do you have to service a TAG Heuer watch?

You should have your TAG Heuer watch professionally serviced every 12 months to check the seals and, if applicable, to renew the battery. The watch should also have a comprehensive service every four years. For the best results, and to ensure your watch maintains its value, it is essential to have your TAG Heuer watch serviced by an authorised dealer such as Ernest Jones.

Which TAG Heuer watch is best for a gift?

As with any such question, much depends on for whom the gift is intended. TAG Heuer present a wealth of choice and any of their watches would be a welcome discovery on opening the box. For the sophisticated lady, perhaps the Carrera. For the discerning gentleman, consider the Monaco. Of course, TAG Heuer is most closely associated with sports timing with the Formula 1 or Aquaracer being the ideal gift for anyone of a sporting disposition. In particular, TAG Heuer is the official timekeeper for the Premier League and for a limited time there is an added incentive to purchase a TAG Heuer watch. If you purchase any TAG Heuer watch between now and the 6th October you may enter your details for the opportunity to win a pair of Premier League tickets. This is the ideal opportunity to please the football fan in your life with a perfect gift of a TAG Heuer watch with the added frisson of a chance to watch his or her favourite team in action.