Whether you use these sporty, performance-built timepieces for their intended purposes or not, one outcome is certain: Their winning looks will ensure that they stand out from the competition.
TEXT LYNETTE KOH ILLUSTRATION DENISE REI LOW
First introduced in 1954 for the now-defunct Pan Am airlines (Pan American World Airways), the Rolex GMT-Master II was designed to help pilots easily figure out the time in different time zones, via its 24-hour bidirectional rotating bezel and 24-hour hand. Today, jet-setters everywhere are fans of this timepiece, which is updated this year in steel, with an iconic Pepsi (red and blue) ceramic dial, a Jubilee bracelet, and the new Calibre 3285 automatic movement.
Before the Omega Speedmaster took on its lunar associations – due to its status as Nasa’s watch of choice in its space missions – it was known for being a top sports and motor-racing chronograph. The new Speedmaster “Dark Side of the Moon” Apollo 8 pays homage to the Apollo 8 crew, who were the first people to see the dark side of the moon in 1968. The 44.25mm ceramic watch features the hand-wound Calibre 1869, which has been blackened and laser-ablated on both sides to represent the lunar surface.
File under “things you never knew you needed”: a tonneau-shaped dive watch. The latest member of this niche group of timepieces is the Skafander is by Franck Muller, a brand typically associated with the barrel form. Water-resistant to 100m, the timepiece features an inner dive bezel and an automatic movement, all housed in a 57mm by 46mm steel (it’s also available in rose gold) case.
Quickly emerging as the Richard Mille watch sported by a wide range of athletes ranging from runners to car racers, the RM 67-02 Alexis Pinturault was designed for the eponymous French alpine skier. The sleek timepiece is distinguished by an appropriately wintry white Quartz TPT (an ultra-light composite material) case and a highly skeletonised automatic movement that further reduces the weight of the 47.52mm by 38.7mm watch to an almost-negligible 32g.
Following the announcement of its partnership with Aston Martin, Tag Heuer has launched specialedition watches celebrating the British luxury automobile manufacturer. The Carrera Heuer 01 Aston Martin Special Edition is a 45mm statement piece featuring a black ceramic bezel and a steel case, jazzed up with racing-inspired touches – such as a skeletonised dial with hexagonal patterns inspired by details on the new Aston Martin Vantage, and speed-evoking, parallel lines on the side of the case.
Fans of screeching F1 tyres can now sport them on their wrists, thanks to Roger Dubuis’ collaborative models with tyre-maker Pirelli. The Excalibur Spider Pirelli Automatic Skeleton has a strap that features a rubber inlay made from certified race-winning tyres. The rest of the 45mm black-DLC titanium timepiece will also have admirers stopping in their tracks: The highly skeletonised automatic movement is held in place by boldly designed bridges – you can’t miss that Roger Dubuis star motif – and is wound by a micro-rotor.
Packaged in an unmissable, true-to-Panerai DNA 47mm titanium case, the Luminor Submersible 1950 Amagnetic 3 Days Automatic (PAM 1389) is the descendant of the anti-magnetic PAM 389. The new dive watch features updates such as a blue seconds hand, larger hour indexes and two-tone lume. Most notably, it houses the new Panerai automatic Calibre P.9010, which allows the hour hand to be independently adjusted in one-hour increments – a nifty feature for frequent travellers.