- 5 x 12 mm case
- 48mm Lug to lug
- Automatic Tag Heuer Calibre 5 (ETA-2824-2) for pre 2012 production
- 20mm Lugs
- Large luminescent hands and marker
- Flat sapphire crystal with AR (scratch resistant)
- Aluminum unidirectional bezel
- Tapered steel bracelet with SEL
- 300m Water resistant
- 38 hours power reserve
- Date window
- MSRP $2600
Tag Heuer is a popular brand in entry luxury Swiss watch market, for the average Joe the brand “Tag Heuer” is identical with “expensive watch”. Despite the very much lower price than the average Rolex, Tag is viewed as one those luxury watch brand. Perhaps that is caused by the endorsement made by celebrities using Tag Heuer such as Tiger Woods, Leonardo DiCaprio, and Cameron Diaz. Tag Heuer is popular by its Formula 1 and Monaco line, although it also produce a diver line called “Aquaracer”. Dive watch has been and probably will always be the most sought watch and retained its value better than other line. Diver watch like WAN2111 is slim enough to be weared under shirt and sporty enough to be weared with polo, best of both world. Many watch enthusiast favorite watch are diver due to the versatility combined with our wardrobe and the water resistant mark leave our worry about hand washing or being plunged into swimming pool (or perhaps into the deep sea, just like Bond in Skyfall)
My mother bought this watch for me when I was in high school more than five years ago. One day after school, she took me to the most fancy shopping center in my city and told me to buy a watch. There was a Tag Heuer exhibition she read in the newspaper earlier and decided to buy me one. I wasn’t educated in luxury watch at that time and asked my mother to choose one for me, an automatic watch with simple dial that could last for a long time. That’s how I got my first “real watch”, before that time I wear a Timex chronograph in leather.
Keep in mind that this is not one of those technical review about Aquaracer 300m, but rather a user perspective and review about the watch. I wear Tag Heuer Aquaracer 300m everyday since the day my mother bought it for me until a year ago when I bought Omega seamaster, the blue dial really stand out from the crowd of people with white and black dial watch, it also reflect light and shine when exposed directly with light source which makes it flashy in a night out. The bracelet is comfortable but feel rather “cheap” (compared with Omega Seamaster Professional). As you might expect from a tool and everyday watch, I took it to beach, swimming in ocean, cycling, travel, and knock it to wall. On last June I went to Bali and wear it for four days without taking it off, even on shower and sleeping. As a result the bracelet took a scratch here and there, specially in the clasp which contact directly with table surface. But that’s the use of a tool watch, right? The bracelet is brushed, so I could actually erase those scratch with scotch bright and aluminum cleanser.
The case is rather big on my six inches wrist, but not out of proportion. It feel just right and comfortable even after a day use. I use it for sports as well, timing the minute hand with the unidirectional bezel. The bezel has 120 clicks over 360 degree rotation and it is easy to gripped, the minute indicator could also easily seen. Date window is located on 3 o’clock with black ink over white background, ETA 2824-2 let you change the date without having to set the time hand. Power reserve capacity is 38 hours, means you could wear it a day, leave it for the next day (perhaps rotating between your other automatic watch), and wear it again the next day without having to set the time again. Accuracy wise, it runs about +4 seconds a day with mine, but it balance a bit over long term. Nothing to complain here for an entry automatic watch with nice exterior.
I bought this watch for around $900 back then, now it’s sold about $1700 brand new despite the $2600 MSRP. Overall I’m very satisfied with Tag Heuer Aquaracer 300m, and I’m glad that I choose blue dial instead of the more common black dial because of the reflection when exposed with direct light source. The lumiscent glows for about 5 minutes then it dims, but still readable in pitch black after one hour, my Omega Seamaster does better than that (it also cost twice the price). I swim with my watch and am confident with its 300 meters rating, never have any leak until today.
A very nice watch in its market target, although today I would probably buy Rolex submariner ($8000, it could buy 6 of Tag), or Omega seamaster professional 300 (which I have the GMT version today for $4200), or Omega planet ocean (the standard model cost about $5000). Tag Heuer Aquaracer 300m is perfect for a man wanting simple, quality, everyday watch that will run for a long time. Today I use it for sports and night out with friends, also when I’m expecting to do hard work that could scratch my watch.