TAG Heuer Introduces the Formula 1 X Mario Kart

An affordable chronograph and a tourbillon chronograph.

With a near-unparalleled history in auto racing, TAG Heuer’s latest is a light-hearted take on its storied past. Inspired by the famous plumber now driving a go-kart, the Formula 1 X Mario Kart pair are both limited-edition chronographs, each opposing ends of the price spectrum.

The base model is the Formula 1 X Mario Kart Chronograph with an “Easter egg” date display, while the top-of-the-line model is a variant of TAG Heuer’s tourbillon-chronograph with the COSC-certified Calibre Heuer 02T movement.

Initial thoughts

Pop culture adds levity to mechanical watchmaking and usually enhances the appeal, which is why the approach is a familiar one. Gerald Genta did it, and more recently RJ-Romain Jerome. TAG Heuer did it for the first time last year with the Connected × Super Mario that sold out swiftly, proving the appeal of the Italian plumber.

But the Connected was a smartwatch, while the pair of new releases are both mechanical, so they have appeal for watch enthusiasts. The Formula 1 Chronograph is basic but affordable, and livened up by subtle-but-clever Mario elements, like a date display with symbols from the game instead of numerals.

The Formula 1 chronograph

The tourbillon, on the other hand, is essentially an amusingly whimsical iteration of TAG Heuer’s standard tourbillon-chronograph, while not costing that much more, making it a more compelling proposition than the somewhat plain regular-production model.

Mario around the track

Inspired by the Nintendo game of the same name, both watches are dressed in high-speed red and black. The tourbillon has a 45 mm titanium case with a black ceramic bezel insert and a partly open-worked dial. But the centrepiece is the flying tourbillon at six o’clock that carries Mario in his kart, Spiny Shell, and Bullet Bill on its carriage, which makes one revolution a minute.

The watch is powered by the Calibre Heuer 02T, an automatic chronograph movement with a column wheel and vertical clutch, and of course a flying tourbillon regulator.

The Calibre Heuer 02T has a Mario-theme rotor unique to this edition

Featuring a similar aesthetic but far more accessible price, the Formula 1 chronograph has a steel case along with a black ceramic bezel inset.

Featuring a chequered pattern resembling the weave of carbon fibre composite, the dial has a small Mario Kart emblem in the seconds register at nine, but more amusing is the date.

Inspired by the “Easter eggs” found in many computer games, the date disc has assorted symbols from the game in lieu of the date numerals that are sprinkled through the 31 day cycle.

Like the standard Formula 1 chronograph, this is powered by the Calibre 16, which is either a Valjoux 7750 or Sellita SW500, both near-identical, no-frills movements.


Key facts and price

TAG Heuer Formula 1 X Mario Kart Chronograph
Ref. CAZ201E.FC6517

Diameter: 44 mm
Height: Unavailable
Material: Stainless steel with black ceramic bezel
Crystal: Sapphire
Water resistance: 100 m

Movement: Calibre 16
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, date, and chronograph
Frequency: 28,800 beats per hour (4 Hz)
Winding: Automatic
Power reserve: 42 hours

Strap: Black calfskin with folding clasp

Limited edition: 3,000 pieces
Availability: From Oct 2022 at TAG Heuer’s online shop, boutiques, and retailers 
Price: 
US$4,300; or 6,050 Singapore dollars


TAG Heuer Formula 1 X Mario Kart Chronograph Tourbillon
Ref. CAZ5080.FC6517

Diameter: 45 mm
Height: Unavailable
Material:  Titanium with black ceramic bezel
Crystal: Sapphire
Water resistance: 100 m

Movement: Calibre Heuer 02T COSC
Functions: Hours, minutes, tourbillon, and chronograph
Frequency: 28,800 beats per hour (4 Hz)
Winding: Automatic
Power reserve: 65 hours

Strap: Black calfskin with folding clasp

Limited edition: 250 pieces
Availability: From Oct 2022 at TAG Heuer’s online shop and boutiques
Price: 
US$25,600; or 36,100 Singapore dollars

For more, visit tagheuer.com.


 

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