Well, this one came right out of the blue. There I was minding my own business when up pops A Blog to Watch with an article on the new quartz powered TAG Heuer Monaco.
Wait, a what? When did this happen???
This isn't the first time we've had a quartz Monaco, but it's been a while and I don't think anyone was really expecting this. But at the same time, should we be that surprised? JCB is clearly targeting the entry level market and as an entry level Monaco this makes total sense, after all for a while there it looked as if the only Monaco that was going to be available was the Calibre 11 blue dial model (costing £4650). Indeed Mr Biver even suggested in interviews that the Monaco should be a single watch collection.
But I never really bought that to be honest, TAG are too fond of specials and having just one colour dial (and that colour not being black) didn't really ring quite right to me. However, I never dreamed that would mean the brand putting out a battery powered version.
The new quartz Monaco retails for £1350, which should make it a good seller in the shops. When you put this up against some of the Formula Ones that share a price tag, it looks like a bit of a no brainer, but I do wonder if that will actually prove to be the case?
Does the younger market want a watch like this? I mean I'm intrigued because a Monaco has always been an obvious missing piece from my TAG collection. If I could secure the black dial Monaco 24 then that would be my preferred route to Monaco ownership, but financially this makes a lot of sense - especially if I can pick one up second hand.
See, for me, a Monaco is definitely not something I would wear daily, it would effectively be a 'dress' watch for me, and as such I don't really want to spend a fortune on it. So maybe this is a good compromise, forgoing the mechanical movement for an affordable piece that I can own and wear very occasionally, without tying up a lot of cash?
Admittedly I haven't seen this model yet, and it is 37mm which may prove to be too small. But square watches always wear larger than they actually measure, so I'm keeping an open mind and looking forward to getting the chance to slip it on the wrist. I don't know whether this has a deployment clasp or if it has a pin/buckle style strap, and if its the same deployment clasp as was used on the old Aquaracers then it may be a non starter anyway...
I must admit, at first glance I was unsure about the new TAG logo on that dial. I couldn't work out whether it looked right. Now of course there are some people who say the name 'TAG Heuer' should never feature on a Monaco dial... but in actual fact I think maybe the new logo modernises the watch a bit. It's definitely going to be interesting checking this one out I think!