Motorsport & Horology: A Match Cast in Time
Tuesday - 10 September 2013
Sports cars are the natural partner to luxury timepieces. Both are all about elegance and refinement. Both require stunning design and world class workmanship. In both automobiles and wristwatches, it's the small details that make a big difference.
With David Beckham recently highlighting the decade-long partnership between Bentley and Breitling, we decided to take a look at other inspired partnerships between the world's of motoring and horology.
Breitling was one of the first brands to spot the potential for a fruitful relationship with motorsport through its Vitesse stopwatch. The Vitesse was so accurate, police officers used it to check for speeding traffic.
The love affair was ongoing, though it wasn't until the 1960's that the relationship between cars and wristwatches really blossomed. This culminated with TAG Heuer launching the Monaco in 1969, the world's first water resistant square chronograph. When Steve McQueen wore the Monaco in the classic film Le Mans, the watch became the icon of an era.
Going forward into the 1970s, TAG Heuer was the Official Timekeeper of Ferrari. So when the producers of Rush, a movie telling the story of the 1976 Formula One season, needed a hand portraying the era, they approached TAG Heuer, and asked for the watchmaker's help. TAG Heuer gladly agreed.
Talking of Formula One, TAG Heuer is one of Lewis Hamilton's favourite watch brands.
Another famous partnership of recent years is that between Jaeger-LeCoultre and Aston Martin. The result has been the gorgeous Amvox watch collection. This includes the Amvox2 DBS Transponder, which can remotely unlock the doors of its owner's Aston Martin.
Meanwhile, Ball Watch Company has a collection of watches designed in collaboration with BMW. The anti-shock system built into the watches is inspired by BMW's suspension technology. The two brands focus on their shared values in their "quest for perfection, precision and expertise".
BMW also worked with a watch brand back in 1980. Baume et Mercier wanted to test the durability of their Riviera sports watch. To do this, they mounted the watch on the wheel of a BMW M1 before the start of the 1980 Le Mans race. The watch ran perfectly after the race, having endured 24 hours of extreme conditions.
Which sports car would your partner up with your favourite watch brand?