Hands on Review- TAG Heuer Monaco Twenty Four Racing

Posted by: David Chalmers   |   8 July 2011   |   19 Comments  

Following on from the “full-black” Twenty Four Gulf, TAG Heuer has released a second version of the Monaco with the floating dial- called the Monaco Twenty Four Racing.

Calibre 11 showed you the first photos of the watch in April, but those were quick shots grabbed through a glass case in Basel- here for the first time are detailed shots of the watch along the rest of the Monaco family.

While I love the vintage look of the original Monaco and the re-editions that have followed, to me the watch would stagnated unless a new-look was developed- a design as modern and bold as the original was back in 1969. And there is no doubt that the Twenty-Four fits that description.

Heritage

The story behind the original Monaco is well known- it was a purposefully “out there” design launched in 1969 to attract attention to the then-new Chronomatic Calibre 11 movement that would power the Heuer range through the 1970s.

After a period in hiatus, the watch was brought back in 1997 and is now one of the core models in the line. Below from clockwise, you see the Heuer Monaco 1133B (1971), Monaco Twenty Four Racing (2011), Monaco Calibre 11 Vintage (2010), Monaco Calibre 17  re-edition (2003) and the Monaco Calibre 11 Chronograph (2011)

The basic design of the original watch continues on both today’s re-edition model and on the Twenty Four- the square case shape, circular inner “dial”, bi-compax layout and sword-shaped hands.

While the 2011 Calibre 11 (centre below) is faithful to the original design, the Twenty-Four simply takes the key character of the watch and wraps them into a modern design.

Monaco Twenty Four Design

The Twenty-Four Racing (Reference CAL5112.FC6298) is essentially the same watch as the 2010 Monaco 24 Gulf, but with a stainless steel case (40.5mm) and a different colour dial.

It’s not an overly large watch- 40.5mm- but it does wear larger than that due to the thickness of the case. The leather strap is reinforced where it meets the lugs, meaning that the watch doesn’t feel too top-heavy.

The dial is an anthracite (Grey/ Silver) colour with a fantastic grained finish on the central section of the dial.

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