TAG Heuer is famous for producing some of the industry’s most durable, elegant, and functional dive watches. Its timepieces lean more to the sporty side but have the advantage of refined lines and mouth-watering designs, earning them admiration from even watch enthusiasts with a preference for formal watches.
The Swiss watch brand introduced its first dive timepieces in 1978 and has been working to improve them ever since. All the commendable effort is evident in its newest TAG Heuer Professional 300 GMT watch that was released in August 2022.
It resembles its 2021 predecessor but presents a slimmer case and a bezel with a bi-color GMT scale. What other exciting features does the newest member of the Aquaracer collection bring to the table? The following TAG Heuer Aquaracer review tells it all.
The TAG Heuer Aquaracer Professional 300 GMT ref. WBP201B.BA0632 has a well-polished stainless steel case. The case is 43mm in diameter and 12.20mm in thickness, giving it a bulky yet masculine feel.
It’s engineered to perfection, with polished chamfers, shorter lugs, and an easy-grip 12-sided screw-down crown with the TAG Heuer enigma. The crown takes shelter in the two crown guards and is well-rounded to avoid accidentally clinging to the wearer’s shirt or sweater.
Its highlight has to be the attention-grabbing twelve-sided bi-directional ceramic bezel (dodecagonal), with a knurled edge and delicious bi-color GMT scale. It has a deep midnight blue hue from 6 in the evening to six in the morning, an alluring soft white tint for the rest of the 12 hours, and a downward-facing triangle at 12 o’clock (midnight).
The white part has Arabic numerals printed in black, providing a perfect and symbolic contrast. Meanwhile, the blue side of the scale has digits printed in white. The bezel is rotatable to 60 clicks and offers a soothing click sound when turned, thanks to TAG Heuer’s meticulous improvement of its inner tooth profile.
As for the caseback, it’s also solid steel and screwed with a circular outer shape and contrasting inner hexagonal shape. The solid caseback also has TAG Heuer’s trademark scaphandre suit helmet that’s been reinterpreted with a faceted contour, small steel dots in the helmet’s background, and the words ‘TAG HEUER,’ ‘AQUARACER,’ ‘300 METERS’, and ‘SWISS MADE SINCE 1860’ around the hexagon.
The case is water resistant to 300m, making it ideal for commercial diving.
The ref. WBP201B.BA0632 has a neat and super legible dial that’s shielded by a domed scratch-resistant sapphire crystal. The crystal has a cyclops magnifier lens at 6 o’clock, but we’ll get to that in a moment.
The dial is a rich blue color and is sunray-brushed with horizontal lines, luminescent silver-tone hands, and circular/index hour markers. The circular markers have an octagonal silhouette, a nod to the stylish and highly-functional bezel. The index marker at 12 o’clock is larger and broader than those at 3 and 9 o’clock. All elements are filled with Super-LumiNova lume.
As for its hands, the hour hand is wider and more sword-shaped than the minute hand. The central sweep seconds hand is rhodium-plated and has a lume-filled yellow lacquer. There’s also a GMT hand that’s finished in yellow lacquer and has a luminescent arrow tip. The GMT hand indicates the time in a second-time zone and is adjusted through the crown.
The yellow color adds a fun visual splash to the dial and pairs with the silver and blue without causing any time-telling interference.
The date window at six o’clock is amplified by the magnifying lens for better visibility. The placement of the date at 6 o’clock is a praiseworthy move as it breaks the monotony of putting the window at 3 o’clock. It also gives the dial a more relaxed feel.
Additionally, there’s a tiny hour marker below the date window that brings balance and completion to the overall dial design.
There’s also a minute marker around the rim and the words ‘AQUARACER’ and TAG Heuer logo printed under 12 o’clock and ‘GMT,’ ‘AUTOMATIC (in yellow),’ and ‘300m/1000ft’ printed on the lower dial above 6 o’clock.
TAG Heuer chose a worthy movement for this model, the ultra-reliable self-winding Caliber 5, which is an outsourced movement.
It’s Swiss-made and is based on either the Sellita Caliber SW200-1 or ETA Caliber 2824-2. It’s also present in previous but newer TAG Heuer Aquaracer Professional models.
It offers a 38-hour power reserve, 25 (ETA) or 26 (Sellita) jewels, and a 28,800vph frequency. Moreover, it has 11.5 lignes and might feature a special finishing of Cotes de Geneve on the rotor.
This good watch from the Aquaracer series comes with a fine-brushed and polished 3-link oyster-style stainless steel bracelet. However, the TAG Heuer Aquaracer Professional 300 GMT watch also comes with a sporty, smooth blue rubber strap (ref. WBP2010.FT6198).
The steel bracelet complements the steel case and has uniform links that join to wrap around the wrist comfortably.
The rubber deployant strap has decorative lines, offering a contrast to the overall steel design and matching the bezel and dial. It also works to provide a less serious companion on dry land as rubber is a flexible and everyday type of material.
Both options have a steel folding clasp with the TAG Heuer logo and double safety push buttons. It integrates a toolless sliding micro-adjustment system. The beauty of this feature is it allows the wearer to adjust the bracelet to their preferred length. The fine adjustment system reduces or increases the bracelet length by at least 1.5 cm.
The Competitive Landscape
Entry-level dive watches fetch a hefty price among watch connoisseurs- some more than others. The new Aquaracer 300 GMT ref. WBP201B.BA0632 is among the leading timepieces in terms of price, retailing at S$5,085 (and S$4,683 for the rubber strap option), according to the TAG Heuer website.
Other watches from other watch brands are also stepping up to the challenge, offering more affordable costs for equally good or better features. Here’s a run-down of some of the TAG Heuer Aquaracer Professional 300 GMT’s top competitors and what they offer:
1. Longines HydroConquest Watch- Stainless Steel, Black Dial Ref. L37414566
The Longines HydroConquest watch ref. L37414566 offers a more luxurious look thanks to its black-steel makeup. Its movement also provides a longer power reserve, it has a bezel that’s easier to use and it’s lighter with a case size that’s comfortable for more wearers.
It’s also more price-friendly, retailing for S$2,344. It has a pre-owned price of at least S$1,203. The cost could be more, depending on the seller and its condition.
2. Certina DS Action Diver Watch- Stainless Steel, Black Dial Ref. C032.607.11.051.00
This watch edges closer to the TAG Heuer Aquaracer Professional 300 GMT, with several features that make it more appealing, including its more masculine design and anti-magnetic movement with a longer power reserve.
It’s also more affordable, with a retail price of S$1,270. Its pre-owned price falls between S$1,300 and S$1,500.
The following table highlights the primary features of the options above:
Longines HydroConquest Watch Ref. L37414566
Certina DS Action Diver Watch Ref. C032.607.11.051.00
Why You Should Invest?
It might be the newest of the Aquaracer watches, but it’s gaining attention among more watch enthusiasts for its robust design, dual-time function, and two-tone bi-directional bezel. It also gets extra points since it’s an everyday type of watch rather than an exclusive diving timepiece.
Additionally, it has held its price nicely since its introduction. This is because it’s made from quality and valuable materials and is impressively durable- suited for its purpose. It has even increased in value, with its price rising by 3 percent between August 2022 and February 2023.
1. Are TAG Heuer Aquaracer worth it?
TAG Heuer Aquaracer are worth it. They’re durable, functional, offer precise timekeeping for long, and are impressively elegant with a timeless appeal.
2. How long will a TAG Heuer Aquaracer last?
It depends on how long it’s worn and how often it’s serviced. However, it can last for five to six years before needing servicing from a professional.
3. Is TAG Heuer considered luxury?
TAG Heuer is considered luxury although it focuses mainly on sports-themed timepieces. Its watches display Swiss-making professionalism and an unmatched timeless sophistication that a few watch brands can imitate.
4. Is TAG Heuer worth the price?
TAG Heuer is worth the price. It creates rugged pieces with a unique design, top-quality Swiss movements, and an impressively long lifespan if maintained well.
The TAG Heuer Aquaracer 300 GMT is an entry-level luxury dive watch with a difference. It’s the only watch that’s unique in every way, perfectly showcasing TAG Heuer’s ingenuity and unmatched craftsmanship with its enhanced well-toned steel body, well-polished and durable ceramic bezel, and sturdy steel bracelet with a diver’s extension system.
- The TAG Heuer Aquaracer Professional 300 GMT retains its worth well since it’s made from high-quality materials. It can even increase in value with time.
- The TAG Heuer Aquaracer Professional 300 GMT 2022 iteration’s unique features are a two-tone bi-directional bezel, a slimmer case, and shorter and wider lugs.
- The TAG Heuer Aquaracer Professional 300 GMT is an everyday luxury dive watch with a robust design and commanding wrist presence.
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