Tag Heuer Watches
The motto of the Swiss company that manufactures Tag Heuer watches has been Swiss Avant-Garde Since 1860. The company, founded by Edward Heuer in 1860 and known as Heuer, has been producing these watches since that time. Edward first patented the crown-winding mechanism for pocket watches in 1869 and won a silver medal in 1889 for the collection of pocket chronographs he presented at the Universal Exhibition in Paris. He developed the first chronograph for the dashboard of a vehicle in 1911 and in 1914 he developed the first wrist chronograph. A chronograph is a combination of a watch that keeps time and stopwatch.
Heuer was the first company to develop stopwatches that were accurate to 1/100th of a second in 1916. The dashboard timer for use in aircraft and automobiles followed in 1933. It was in the early 1950’s that the company signed on with Abercrombie and Finch to create a design of watches for this retailer. Two of the first models were the Seafarer and the Auto Graph. The dials of the Seafarer watches had yellow, blue and green patterns that predicted high and low tides and could also be used to track the phases of the moon. The Auto Graph was mainly used to compute the mileage speed of an automobile. Heuer introduced its own line of this watch in the late 1960’s – the Mareographe.
In the late 1950’s, the company also developed timepieces that could be mounted on the dashboards of boats, vehicles and aircraft. There were five models of these timepieces, which were produced until well into the 1980’s:
- Master Time – an 8-day clock
- Monte Carlo – a 12-hour stopwatch
- Super Autavia – a full chronograph
- Sebring – 60- second full chronograph
- Auto-Ralleye – a 60-minute stopwatch
Heuer watches became very popular with racing professionals. The Autavia was introduced as a watch in 1962 and was at once a best seller. The Carrera, developed by Jack Heuer in 1963, became the icon of the company because of its clean lines.
The company acquired the Leonidas brand in the early 1960’s and formed a partnership with Breitling and Hamilton in 1969. These developments led to watches bearing brand names such as Heuer-Leonidas. The first automatic watches came after 1969 with brands such as Autavia, Carrera and Monaco. The winding mechanism was on the left and the time settings were on the right.
In the late 1980’s, Heuer introduced watches powered by Lemania 5100, which were very durable and rugged. In 1985, the company became known as Tag Heuer, when TAG acquired the company. TAG was a manufacturer of high-tech items for Formula 1 racing cars. At the same time, the company started producing watches with fewer bells and whistles and so were more affordable for the common people. These include such brand names as Formula One, Cerraro and Monaco. These watches have self-winding mechanisms, sapphire crystals and water resistant casings.