5 Best Auto Racing Inspired Watches
The worlds of watchmaking and automobile racing have been intertwined for decades. Both passions are mechanical at heart; and are rooted in timing, precision, and endurance.While racing and high-performance cars are now niche hobbies, racing-inspired watches still appeal to many watch lovers, even if they’re not into the sport. It’s not hard to see why – racing watches are highly functional and elaborate in design, you can almost hear engines revving when you see them.There are many racing and automobile watches launched every year, but there are a few that have truly earned their stripes. Here’s our list of the best racing-inspired watches ever:
Tudor Heritage Chrono Blue Stainless Steel Mens Watch
#5 | Tudor Heritage Chrono (2013)
Over the past few years, Tudor has had a renaissance; and came up with a fantastic streak of watches inspired by their own history. The watch that started it all is the Tudor Heritage Chrono, inspired by the Oysterdate “Montecarlo” Chronograph of 1973.
The watch’s nickname comes from its roulette inspired wheels; while its orange and blue Mediterranean-inspired color scheme evokes the glamour of the Grand Prix. This contemporary version earns our nod for its meticulous detailing and use of retro inspiration. SEE ALL TUDOR >
from left: Tag Heuer Monaco Calibre 12 Blue Dial Black Strap Mens Watch, Tag Heuer Monaco McQueen Chronograph Limited Edition Watch.
#4 | Tag Heuer Monaco (1969)
The Tag Heuer Monaco was among the very first automatic chronograph watches – an important time in horological history – that began in the late 60s.Aside from its square case, what really makes the Monaco stand out is its heavy helping of sixties style: pump-style pushers, rectangular hour markers, and symmetric square registers. In some models, you’ll even see the legendary Gulf racing colors incorporated.
That it was worn by the legendary actor Steve McQueen in 1971’s Le Mans is already well-known to most; what really makes the watch so covetable is that even with the technical upgrades throughout the years, it stayed true to its beloved design. SEE ALL MONACO >
Tag Heuer Carrera 300 SLR Brown Dial Chronograph Watch
#3 | Tag Heuer Carrera (1963)
Undoubtedly Tag Heuer’s most important and popular timepiece, the Carrera is the watch that gave them a reputation in the racing world.
Jack Heuer took his inspiration from the 1950s “Carrera Panamericana” of Mexico, then the world’s most dangerous race. Just as daring as its namesake was Heuer’s vision for the watch – a clean, minimalist design that’s unlike the complex chronograph dials of the era. Racecar drivers welcomed the Carrera without any reservations.
Tag Heuer was also the first watchmaking sponsor in the world of motor racing ; a brilliant move that other brands have followed, and continue to do today. SEE ALL CARRERA >
Omega Speedmaster Broad Arrow Silver Dial Watch
#2 | Omega Speedmaster (1957)
The Omega Speedmaster is best known as the MoonWatch, having accompanied the Apollo 11 in the first lunar landing of 1969. However, the Speedy’s history actually goes back to 1957, when Omega launched it as a sports and racing chronograph.
The “Speedy” from its name is actually taken from its tachymeter scale bezel. Meanwhile, the “master” is aligned with Omega’s convention of naming its models, like the Seamaster and Railmaster.
Today, the Speedy is the most thoroughly tested timepiece, thanks to its continued use in NASA missions. If it can survive outer space, it sure can handle the race track.
SEE ALL SPEEDMASTER >
from left: Rolex Cosmograph Daytona Yellow Gold Black Dial Mens Watch, Rolex Daytona Yellow Gold Paul Newman Dial Mens Watch
#1 | Rolex Cosmograph Daytona (1963)
The word “iconic” is thrown around in the watch scene. The Rolex Daytona, however, is a watch that everyone can agree, is deserving of the title.
Named after the Daytona International Speedway, the most renowned car racing venue in the US, it was created especially for the needs of professional drivers. Until today, the Rolex Daytona is given as a trophy, to winners of the grueling 24 Hours of Daytona endurance race.
The Rolex Daytona has given collectors many reasons to love it, aside from its proud history in motorsports. Iconic owners like Paul Newman, reliable movements, and a perfectly balanced design make it a top choice among collectors – whether they’re into racing or not. SEE ALL DAYTONA >
SEE MORE OF THE WATCHES IN OUR VIDEO: