Robert Browning once wrote that “a man’s reach should exceed his grasp”. The English poet clearly understood the nature of human audacity and that nagging itch to go beyond one’s comfort zone. His description of this human trait — the need to go further, dive deeper — illuminates the true appeal of the recently released TAG Heuer Aquaracer Professional 300 range.
The word “professional” is no accident, for this is a serious diving watch. Admittedly, few mortals will ever test the limits of its 300 metres of water resistance (the world record for the deepest scuba dive is 332 metres) but that doesn’t stop the Aquaracer from delivering heavy-duty functionality. Features include a ceramic bezel, screw-down crown and solid caseback, all of which ensure the range is genuinely amphibious. As for the dial, the rhodium-plated indices and sword hands are slathered in Super-LumiNova to guarantee visibility, whether in the dead of night or depths of the ocean.
The innards are equally performance-driven, with the watch propelled by TAG Heuer’s Calibre 5, an automatic movement with 38 hours of power reserve and a date display at six o’clock. In short, the Aquaracer is a formidable all-rounder on land and at sea.
Fortunately, it doesn’t sacrifice aesthetics for utility. The design is more streamlined than previous models, with shorter lugs, a thinner build and a slimmer, more finessed bracelet. Much like James Bond in a suit and tie, it’s a watch that conceals its all-action dynamism behind a stylish veneer.
The new Aquaracer comes in various configurations. Five models have a 43-millimetre dial, including a slightly dressier piece with a dial in silver and a version hewn from lightweight titanium in an eye-catching green. Collectors will be racing to get their hands on the Tribute to Heuer 844, a limited-edition Aquaracer that revives the retro swagger of Heuer’s first-ever dive watch, produced in 1978. For those who prefer something smaller, the Aquaracer is available in a 36-millimetre format with a blue, silver or black dial.
Irrespective of size, what TAG Heuer has created here is a rugged utility player that can handle all the bumps and bruises of an active lifestyle. For a go-anywhere, do-anything watch, the new Aquaracer is a serious proposition.