The unveiling of TAG Heuer’s five-watch Monaco 50th Anniversary series continues with the launch of the third watch in the collection tonight in New York ahead of this weekend’s Formula E race through the streets of Brooklyn.
As a reminder, the Monaco 50th Anniversary collection is being rolled out by decade, with the latest watch designed to reference key design themes of the fabulous 1990s. This time we have mainly grey/ silver colour-scheme, with red and blue highlights and a printed red square motif that is sure to be the most talked about feature of the dial.
As with the 1969-1979 and 1979-1989 editions, the 1989-1999 watch is based on the blue-dial Calibre 11 Monaco that has been the mainstay of the modern Monaco collection over the last few years. For those of you new to the Monaco, that is why the crown of the watch sits on the left-hand side of the case- the same placement as the original Calibre 11 Monaco series from 1969.
The dial is the key change for the newest Monaco- in fact, other than dial, hands and strap colours, the 1990s Monaco Calibre 11 is the same as the two other LE watches that we’ve seen to date.
What makes this dial special is the finish- a textured, grained finish that is quite unlike anything we’ve seen on a Monaco before and something that can only be appreciated fully in high-res, which you can see by clicking on the images below.
The traditional sub-dials have a smooth finish (Sandblasted) with a deep-blue square border. And speaking of squares, we come to what will be the most controversial aspect of the dial: the bright red square motif in the centre of the dial that bisects the two registers and links to the Heuer and Monaco logos with the “Automatic Chronograph” text above the date window.
Our immediate reaction from these official photos is that it’s an unnecessary flourish on top of what is already an interesting dial. Yes, it plays with the trademark square silhouette of the case and sub-dials, but it still feels like one detail too many. So far each of the LE series has looked better in the metal than in the photos, so we’ll reserve final judgement until those images come through.
One other interesting detail changes is that the “Monaco” font on the dial has returned to the more modern sans-serif font rather than the serif font of the first two watches in the series- no doubt signalling the move from vintage (70s and 80s) through to modern.
Squares aside, the colour scheme is a winner, with the bright red and dark blue working beautifully on the grey/ silver background, with the same red and blue colour scheme carrying over to the strap, a blue calf-skin leather strap with red stitching.
The caseback is the same design as the first two watches in the series, with each watch bearing the “One of 169” inscription.
50th Anniversary Range
We’re now three watches in to the new series, with each of the three watches launched so far staying well away from any historical references and each having a distinct character, despite all being based on the same basic case/ movement combination.
Price and Availability
The 2019 Monaco Calibre 11 50th Anniversary 1989-1999 Chronograph is the same price as the first two watches, meaning prices as follows across key markets:
- Switzerland: CHF 6,400
- Europe: EUR 5,950
- UK: GBP 5,350
- USA: $6,550
- Japan: JPY 705,000
- Hong Kong: $52,700
The first two watches have sold out almost instantly and we don’t expect any different for the newest member of the 50th Anniversary family.
You can find out more at the official TAG Heuer website here
TAG Heuer Monaco 50th Anniversary Calibre 11 Specifications
|Model Name||TAG Heuer Monaco Calibre 11 Chronograph 50th Anniversary Edition 3: 1989-1999|
|Year of Launch||2019|
|Production Type||Limited Edition of 169|
|Watch Reference Number||CAW211X|
|Strap Reference Code||FC6468|
|Case Material||Stainless Steel/ Fine-brushed and polished|
|Case Diameter||39mm x 39mm|
|Movement||Calibre 11 (Sellita/ Dubois-Depraz)|