The legendary watch worn by Steve McQueen
In 1969, Tag Heuer Monaco replica watch shook up watchmaking tradition by creating the first-ever square water-resistant case. Driven by the celebrated Chronomatic Calibre 11, the Monaco was also the world’s first square automatic chronograph. It was only one year old when Steve McQueen chose to wear it in Le Mans, the famous car racing film, and on the wrist of this major star it soon became an icon. Forty years later, the Monaco series is a truly exceptional collection, a symbol of daring and excellence. Today, TAG Heuer continues to break all the rules with the revolutionary Monaco V4, the world’s first timepiece with a belt-driven transmission.
The Monaco might be one of the most recognizable replica watches of the 20th century, no doubt due to a phenomenal amount of money spent by TAG Heuer in celebrating its connection with Steve McQueen during the filming of the absolute best really bad movie of the 1970s, LeMans. But, what is the original Monaco like to wear, and live with? We see this replica watch posterized so much, it’s often easy to overlook what this replica watch is like from a personal perspective, and while I’ve owned vintage Carreras and a self-winding Autavia, I’d never actually spent much wrist time with an original Monaco.
The Monaco is indeed a cultural icon, but is it also a good watch? That is a great question. TAG Heuer has been producing the Monaco for over 40 years, and even though it sports a unique design, there must be something about this timepiece that keeps people coming back. This was my first time wearing a Monaco at length so let's take a look at how it measured up.