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TAG Heuer: Avant-Garde Since 1860

Swiss watch manufacturer TAG Heuer is the chronograph specialist. They have been producing high-quality timepieces for over 160 years. The brand is synonymous with motorsport and made its film debut in the 1971 classic "Le Mans."

By Chrono24

Luxury Watches With Racing DNA

Few brands enjoy so close a relationship to motorsport as TAG Heuer. Founded in 1860 by Edouard Heuer, this company has been producing stopwatches and chronographs since the very beginning. What's more, the manufacturer added dashboard instruments for cars and aircraft to their repertoire in the early 20th century.

Edouard's great-grandson, Jack, made Heuer watches the de facto standard of the racing world in the 1960s. Models like the Autavia, Carrera, and Monaco quickly earned cult followings and remain integral parts of TAG Heuer's current catalog. However, more recent collections like the Formula 1 and Aquaracer line of diving watches are also highly popular among the brand's fans.

Throughout its history, TAG Heuer has distinguished itself as an innovator in the industry – a legacy this Swiss watch manufacturer continues to this day. For example, TAG Heuer's engineers regularly use materials from the motorsport and aerospace industries. Furthermore, they were the first luxury watchmaker that dared to enter the smartwatch market with their Connected collection.

5 Reasons to Buy a TAG Heuer Watch

  • World-famous racing watches with a cult following
  • Practical features like a chronograph or GMT function
  • A design classic: the square Monaco
  • Top models with a tourbillon and chronograph
  • TAG Heuer Connected: the first luxury smartwatch

Prices at a Glance: TAG Heuer Watches

Model, reference number Price (approx.) Material, features
Monaco V4, WAW2170.FC6261 64,500 USD Platinum, belt-driven caliber V4
Carrera Heuer 02T Nanograph, CAR5A8K.FT6172 18,800 USD Titanium, tourbillon, Isograph technology
Monaco Calibre 11, CAW211P.FC6356 6,500 USD Stainless steel, chronograph, caliber 11 (ETA base), blue dial
Autavia Heuer 02, CBE2110.BA0687 4,500 USD Stainless steel, chronograph, caliber Heuer 02
Carrera 1887, CAR2012.FC6236 5,400 USD Stainless steel, chronograph, caliber 1887
Aquaracer, WAY201A.BA0927 2,300 USD Stainless steel, three hands, date, caliber 5
Connected, SBF8A8001.11FT6076 1,500 USD Titanium, smartwatch

How much do TAG Heuer watches cost?

The most affordable means of owning a TAG Heuer watch is to buy a second-hand model with a quartz movement. Formula 1 models are available for just a few hundred dollars. The Aquaracer diving watch (ref. WAY201A.BA0927) with a mechanical movement changes hands for roughly 2,300 USD. For a three-hand version of the Autavia, such as the reference WBE5116.EB0173, you should plan on spending about 2,700 USD. If you want an Autavia chronograph, the price climbs to approximately 4,500 USD. A modern reinterpretation of the legendary Carrera chronograph like ref. CBS2210.FC6534 will set you back about 5,500 USD.

If you're interested in a TAG Heuer Monaco, the ref. CBL2111.FC6453 with a blue dial demands an investment of around 4,900 USD on Chrono24 in mint condition.

The timepieces in the Connected collection are digital, and purchase prices start at around 1,300 USD for specimens in mint condition.


Heuer Carrera: Legendary Since 1963

The Carrera line has been among TAG Heuer's most famous and successful collections since its debut in 1963. Designed by Jack Heuer himself, it gets its name from the famous Carrera Pan-Americana rally, which was the most dangerous event of its kind back in the 1950s.

Over the decades, the Carrera has grown into a comprehensive collection of both vintage-inspired timepieces and watches with modern designs, including several options with a tachymeter bezel. TAG Heuer offers various chronograph editions, automatic three-hand watches with a date display, and models with skeletonized dials.

The Carrera Calibre 16 is a true modern classic. The model is powered by the time-tested Valjoux 7750, the most widely used chronograph caliber in the world. This Carrera is available in numerous designs, ranging from sporty and modern to more elegant versions on an alligator leather strap. The ref. CBK2110.BA0715 has a classic look stainless steel bracelet. Be sure to set aside about 3,900 USD for one in mint condition.

The TAG Heuer Carrera Calibre 5 is the series' most affordable model. This automatic three-hand watch comes with your choice of a day or day-date display. You can also choose between a solid stainless steel case or a two-tone combination of stainless steel and rose gold. Depending on the version, a Carrera Calibre 5 will set you back between 1,900 and 2,500 USD.

TAG Heuer Carrera With an In-House Caliber

TAG Heuer has been outfitting select Carrera models with in-house calibers since 2010. Their first in-house movement, the Calibre 1887, is actually based on the Seiko caliber 6S78. The more recent Calibre Heuer 01 is very similar and appears in their sporty modern chronographs. A skeletonized dial lends these timepieces a particularly futuristic look. The Carrera Calibre 1887, on the other hand, has a more classically elegant design. Prices vary by model and range from between 3,000 and 4,300 USD.

The Carrera Calibre Heuer 02 is equipped with the latest generation of in-house chronograph calibers. The movement boasts an impressive 80-hour power reserve and a date display between 4 and 5 o'clock. The 2020 sports models cost about 5,700 USD, while prices for versions with skeletonized dials begin around 4,800 USD. Watches with an additional GMT function (ref. CBG2A1Z.BA0658) demand an investment of approximately 6,200 USD.

The Heuer 02 caliber also ticks away in numerous special editions of the Carrera, such as the 160th anniversary editions and the Porsche Edition presented in 2021. The latter was created in close collaboration with the sports car manufacturer, and its design is strongly inspired by the dashboard of the Porsche 911 Carrera. The Carrera Porsche Special Edition on a stainless steel or leather strap changes hands on Chrono24 for roughly 5,800 USD each.

Top Models With Tourbillons

The in-house caliber Heuer 02T ticks away inside the most complicated Carrera models. The movement features a tourbillon at 6 o'clock that makes one full rotation per minute. Titanium models with diamond-set bezels are particularly stylish and cost around 20,000 USD in mint condition, while a ceramic model will set you back about 17,000 USD. The Carrera Heuer 02T Nanograph is the collection's top model and features a hairspring made of a special carbon composite. This timepiece demands an investment of around 18,800 USD on Chrono24.

TAG Heuer presented a new stainless steel Carrera with a tourbillon and striking, glossy green dial, which you can find on Chrono24 under the reference number CBS5011.FC6566. Expect to spend about 22,000 USD on this model.

The Carrera's 60th Anniversary

In 2023, the Carrera celebrated its 60th birthday – reason enough for TAG Heuer to present some new models.

With the Carrera Chronograph 60th Anniversary Edition (ref. CBK221H.FC8317), the TAG Heuer presented a limited edition of 600 pieces, reminiscent of the ref. 2447 SN. This model appeared in the late 1960s and is characterized by a silver tricompax panda dial, as is the anniversary model. Powered by the Heuer 02 caliber, this 39-mm watch will set you back about 8,300 USD on Chrono24.

The Porsche 911 also celebrated its 60th anniversary in 2023, and TAG Heuer celebrated the occasion by presenting the Carrera Chronosprint ref. CBS2011.FC6529, a stainless steel timepiece dedicated to the famous sports car from Stuttgart-Zuffenhausen. This special version of the Carrera features an accelerated second hand, which takes just 15 seconds for the first 30 seconds (instead of the usual 30), and slows down towards the end. This is made possible by the in-house caliber TH20-08, which sets the pace in the 42-mm watch. Plan to spend approximately 8,500 USD on a new model. The version with a rose gold case can be found under the reference number CBS2040.FC8318, which sells for around 21,400 USD.

The TAG Heuer Carrera Skipper is dedicated to the Skipper created for sailors 40 years ago. The new 39-mm stainless steel model (ref. CBS2213.FN6002) is almost a 1:1 replica of the design of the Skipper from 1983. The blue dial features a three-color 15-minute regatta counter at 3 o'clock and a 12-hour indicator at 9. A small seconds at the 6 o'clock position completes the tricompax layout. The Skipper is powered by the automatic caliber TH20-06 and changes hands on Chrono24 for roughly 6,870 USD. In 2024, a rose gold variant was released; this version costs around 14,500 USD.

New Carrera Models in 2024

Along with the Carrera Skipper in rose gold, TAG Heuer presented two other models of its racing chronograph at Watches and Wonders 2024.

The Carrera Chronograph Panda is inspired by the Carrera 7753 SN produced by Heuer in the 1960s. The watch has a silver dial with black subdials at 3 and 9 o'clock. At 6 o'clock, there's a small seconds hand and date display on a silver background. The case features a new "glass box design", by which the sapphire crystal extends over the entire case. Below it, at the outer edge, is a black, domed tachymeter scale. The 39-mm stainless steel watch is powered by the in-house caliber TH20-00. On Chrono24, the price point for a mint specimen sits at around 6,800 USD.

The Carrera Dato ref. CBS2211.FC6545 is somewhat restrained. The model adapts the functionality and design of the Carrera 45 Dato introduced in 1968, which, when transferred to the dial, means that the new chronograph only has a 30-minute counter at 3 o'clock. Back in the day, the design earned the watch the nickname "Cyclops". Other unique features include the date display at 9 o'clock and a green dial with a sunburst finish. The 39-mm stainless steel watch is equipped with a TH20-07 caliber. Expect to spend around 5,200 USD for an unworn watch.


The TAG Heuer Monaco: A Square-Shaped Icon

The TAG Heuer Monaco is a true design classic. This square chronograph first rose to world fame after it appeared on Steve McQueen's wrist in the film "Le Mans." As a result, vintage models from this era are highly-coveted collector's items. This is especially true of the ref. 1133B with a blue, white, and red dial and the Chronomatic caliber 11 or 12. Both movements were among the first automatic chronograph calibers ever produced and stand out visually, thanks to the position of the crown on the left and chronograph pushers on the right. A well-maintained ref. 1133B often demands upwards of 15,000 USD today. The version with a gray dial bears the reference number 1133G and changes hands for as little as 8,400 USD on Chrono24.

Current models with a blue, white, and red dial look so similar to the original that you'd be forgiven for mistaking the two. Versions with the new Calibre 11 bear a particularly strong resemblance to their iconic predecessor. Like the original, the crown sits on the case's left-hand side. However, the movement is actually a modified Sellita SW300 or ETA 2892 with an added chronograph module. This modular construction dates back to early Monaco watches from the 1970s. Prices for timepieces with a blue, white, and red "McQueen" dial sit around 6,500 USD.

If you'd prefer a watch with a crown on the right side, you should take a closer look at the Monaco Calibre 12. Its movement is also based on the Sellita SW300 or ETA 2892, but has a conventional crown and push-piece layout. Here, you can choose between versions with a black or blue dial. These models sell for around 4,900 USD each.

As of 2020, TAG Heuer began phasing out the Monaco Calibre 12 and replacing it with the in-house caliber Heuer 02. You can purchase a standard edition with a black or blue dial for approximately 6,200 USD on Chrono24. TAG Heuer also offers special editions like the Monaco Grand Prix de Monaco with a red and white dial (ref. CBL2114.FC6486) and the Monaco Green with a dark green sunburst dial (ref. CBL2116.FC6497). These timepieces demand an investment of between 8,700 and 11,000 USD.

TAG Heuer first introduced Monaco variants with skeletonized dials in 2023. The Monaco Chronograph Skeleton is made of titanium and available in the three color combinations "Original Blue," "Racing Red," and "Turquoise." In the latter model, the titanium case is PVD-coated in black. The corresponding colors can be found on the dials, the column wheel of the movement, and the oscillating mass, among other things. The Monaco Skeleton features the TAG Heuer in-house caliber Heuer 02, which offers a power reserve of 80 hours. You can find the Monaco Chronograph Skeleton on Chrono24 for between 9,600 and 10,200 USD.

The case of the Monaco Night Driver (ref. CBL2181.FC6515) released in 2023 is also made of titanium. The main feature of this black-coated watch is its opal gray dial, the outer edges and subdials of whichglow blue in the dark. The watch is powered by the caliber Heuer 02 and will set you back about 9,400 USD.

New in 2024: The Monaco Split-Seconds

In 2024, TAG Heuer introduced the Monaco Split-Seconds, two new versions of its legendary chronograph with a rattrapante function. As the name suggests, the watch can measure two different time intervals simultaneously, thanks to an additional chronograph second hand. The titanium case measures 41 mm in diameter. The Monaco Split-Seconds is available in blue (ref. CBW2182.FC8339) and red (ref. CBW2181.FC8322), with the case of the latter version coated in black. The respective colors can be found on the indices, hands, separate rattrapante pushers on the left side of the case, and textile strap. The watches are powered by the automatic in-house Heuer caliber TH81-00, which has a power reserve of 65 hours.

TAG Heuer only makes the Monaco Split-Seconds on request. Both references have a list price of 138,000 USD. As of April 2024, you could buy one on Chrono24 starting at around 91,000 USD in mint condition.


Autavia: From the Dashboard to Your Wrist

The Autavia completes the trilogy of legendary TAG Heuer chronographs. Its name is a portmanteau of the words "automobile" and "aviation." It originally debuted in 1933 as a dashboard clock for race cars and aircraft. Heuer later transformed it into a wristwatch, which they then released in 1962. Vintage Autavias like the ref. 2446 from the 60s are extremely coveted today and can demand more than 16,000 USD in good condition. Especially rare models like the 2446 GMT often sell for much higher prices.

Vintage Autavias from the 1970s and 80s are much more affordable. Heuer equipped most Autavias from this era with the Chronomatic calibers 11, 12, and 15. These timepieces have cushion-shaped cases that further set them apart from the manual models from the 1960s. Well-maintained specimens cost between 4,500 and 5,600 USD on Chrono24.

In 2017, TAG Heuer reintroduced the Autavia with the in-house caliber Heuer 02. Its design bears a strong resemblance to chronographs from the 1960s. A bidirectional bezel with a 12-hour scale and a 42-mm case define this retro timepiece. The automatic caliber Heuer 02 provides the watch with an 80-hour power reserve, stop-seconds mechanism, and quick-set date. You can purchase the version with a black dial and white subdials (ref. CBE2110.BA0687) for about 4,500 USD. The model with a white dial and black subdials will set you back about 5,300 USD.

A New Autavia With Three Hands

TAG Heuer treated the Autavia to a redesign in 2019. The collection has since exclusively contained three-hand watches powered by the caliber 5. This is a modified ETA 2824 movement that TAG Heuer equips with their proprietary Isograph balance made from a special anti-magnetic composite material. Furthermore, the caliber 5 in the new Autavia comes with COSC chronometer certification.

Historical models play a major role in the design of the modern Autavia. The easy-to-read luminous Arabic numerals date back to Autavia dashboard instruments from the 1930s, while the bezel comes from Jack Heuer's early designs from the 1960s. Finally, the crown is nearly identical to the crown found on pilot's watches from the 1940s.

Plan to spend around 2,700 USD on a stainless steel Autavia. You'll need about another 300 USD on hand to purchase the same watch in bronze.


Aqua Terra: Under the Sea

The entireAquaracer collection is divided into the Professional 200, Professional 300, and Professional 1000 Superdiver series. The Professional 200 line offers both men's and women's watches. Depending on the collection and model, buyers have the option of a quartz or automatic caliber; some variants also have a solar module. Overall, the selection of dial colors and case sizes is vast, which means there's a suitable watch for almost every taste. There's also a wide range of case materials, including stainless steel, gold, and two-tone versions.


The TAG Heuer Connected: A Luxury Smartwatch

The TAG Heuer Connected was the first smartwatch ever made by a Swiss luxury watch company. Its design resembles that of the Carrera, and its different virtual dials – known as "watch faces" – take their cues from various historical models. The Connected uses an Intel processor and the Android Wear operating system. You can pair the watch with your iOS or Android device and download thousands of apps. For example, you can use the Connected to get directions, pay for items via Google Pay, listen to music, translate phrases, or track your exercise.

The TAG Heuer Connected has a 41 or 45-mm case and is largely made of lightweight titanium. However, there are also models with rose gold-plated or ceramic bezels and lugs. Watches with diamond-studded bezels and lugs are particularly luxurious and geared mainly toward women. When it comes to the band, you can choose from a leather or rubber strap or a ceramic or titanium bracelet.

TAG Heuer introduced new Connected models in 2023, including the Connected E4 Sport Edition. The series consists of three technically identical watches, each with a different color combination. The 45-mm, black-coated titanium watch is available with color accents in either red, orange, or turquoise. The timepieces are primarily aimed at active wearers who need a reliable companion for outdoor activities. The "Trail & Hiking" app, which TAG Heuer introduced in 2023, is a new feature aimed at mountain and running enthusiasts. Another new feature is an integrated barometer that allows the wearer to track speed and altitude. The price for an unworn model is approximately 2,000 USD.


The Story of TAG Heuer

The history of TAG Heuer began in 1860 when 20-year-old Edouard Heuer founded his then-small business in the Swiss town of Saint-Imier. Four years later, Heuer had garnered enough success that he was able to move his company to an impressive building in Biel. In 1882, Heuer patented his first stopwatch, and production began that same year. He developed the so-called oscillating pinion, a revolution in chronograph production, five years later. This mechanism is comprised of a movable stem and two pinions, one of which is constantly engaged with the second wheel.

In 1902, Charles and Jules Heuer took over the family business. Under their leadership, the company focused on producing specialty watches, such as the dashboard chronograph Time of Trip in 1911. This chronograph measured 11 cm in diameter and was ideally suited for installation on car and airplane dashboards. The large central hand told the time while the small pair of hands at 12 o'clock timed periods up to 12 hours.

Heuer achieved another milestone in 1916 with the Mikrograph, a chronograph able to measure time in increments of 1/100th of a second. The delicate second hand only required three seconds to make a complete revolution, and its balance wheel vibrated at an unbelievable frequency of 360,000 vibrations per hour (vph), or 50 Hz. This "super timer," as Heuer called it, was perfect for measuring the flight time of artillery projectiles.

In the early 1930s, Heuer introduced the Time of Trip's successor, the Autavia – a dashboard clock for cars and aircraft. It has a central second hand and two subdials for the 60-minute and 12-hour counters. The stopwatch was often paired with its counterpart, the Hervue, on a solid base plate. The Hervue had a power reserve of eight days and a movement from Revue Thommen. In 1962, exactly 30 years after the Autavia premiered, Heuer debuted a wristwatch chronograph under the same name.

TAG Heuer Milestones

  • 1860: Edouard Heuer founds the business
  • 1882: Introduction of the first Heuer stopwatch
  • 1887: Heuer invents the oscillating pinion
  • 1911: Patent awarded for "Time of Trip" dashboard chronograph
  • 1916: Stopwatch Mikrograph runs at 360,000 vph
  • 1962: Release of the Autavia wristwatch

Mergers and a Change in Ownership

In January 1964, the family business Ed. Heuer & Co. S.A. merged with Leonidas Watch Factory Ltd. However, the Heuer family remained at the helm. During the quartz crisis, the production of mechanical watches was almost completely discontinued. This resulted in the company adding quartz watches, such as the Chronosplit, to their portfolio.

In 1982, then-head of the company, Jack Heuer, was forced to sell his shares in the company. The watch manufacturer Piaget then took charge from 1982 to 1985. In 1985, Techniques d'Avant Garde (TAG) entered and took the reins. In 1988, the company was renamed TAG Heuer S.A., and in 1996, they went public. The French luxury concern LVMH (Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton SE) has owned the company since 1999. Zenith!{man-hublot, and Hublot} are also owned by LVMH.


Expert Timekeepers With Many Famous Fans

TAG Heuer has always fostered a close relationship with motorsport. From the development of their first stopwatch in 1882 to watches meant for travel and ultra-modern chronographs, this Swiss company is the chronograph specialist.

This wasn't lost on Steve McQueen, who wore a square Heuer Monaco in the 1971 film "Le Mans." After making its debut on the silver screen, this watch with a dark blue dial quickly became a cult icon. In late 2020, McQueen's actual watch from the movie went up for auction at Phillips and sold for over 2.2 million USD, making it the most expensive TAG Heuer to date.

Heuer's widespread popularity isn't limited to the Monaco. Racing legends like Aryton Senna and Bruce McLaren relied on the precise timekeeping of their Carreras, while Mario Andretti is a fan of the Autavia. Even former President Barack Obama wore a TAG Heuer during his time as a senator, specifically a model from the 1500 series with similar features to the current Aquaracer collection.


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