Monochrome Watches
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Buying Guide

Shift Into High-Gear with these Five Racing Chronographs

From the track to the wrist, these watches will capture the hearts and minds of Petrolheads the world over.

| By Robin Nooy | 6 min read |

Following last week’s Buying Guide where we listed a range of stylish and practical luxury sports chronographs, we’re shifting things into high gear this week! Again taking a look at the ever-popular chronograph, we take to the tracks instead. These five watches are all closely related to motorsports, where timing is of the essence. And despite the fact timing in racing is now completely digitally controlled, the allure of a good racing chronograph still captures the imagination of people day by day. There’s just something special about being able to wear such a watch, and just imagine timing your laps as you blast around the track in your sports car. With that in mind, here’s a closer look at five amazingly cool racing chronographs.

Tag Heuer Carrera Chronosprint x porsche

Of course, we have to talk about the Carrera Chronograph when it comes to racing chronographs. However, in what is the 60th anniversary year for the iconic model, TAG Heuer presented a whole series of very cool iterations. This one, the Chronosprint in collaboration with Porsche, even comes with a unique little party trick. Its calibre TH20-08 has a specially modified construction that speeds up the chronograph hand in the first 10 seconds and decelerates it during the remainder of the minute. Pretty cool! It’s set in a 42mm wide stainless steel or gold case with a “Glassbox” sapphire crystal. The watch is not limited, comes on a perforated leather strap and has a sticker price of CHF 9,000 in steel or CHF 22,000 in gold.

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Quick Facts – 42mm x 14.9mm – stainless steel or rose gold case, brushed & polished – glassbox domed sapphire crystal – sapphire crystal caseback – 100m water-resistant – silver or beige dial (depending on case material) with applied indices and hands with Super-LumiNova – red chronograph elements – calibre Th20-08, in-house – automatic integrated chronograph – 28,800vph – 80h power reserve – hours, minutes, small seconds, chronograph, date – perforated leather strap – CHF 9,000 in steel, CHF 22,000 in gold

Porsche Design Chronograph 1 GP 2023 Limited Edition

As temperatures are dropping, many racing categories are nearing the end of the season, but not for Porsche Design. Dedicated to the legendary GP Ice Race in Zell am See, the Porsche Design Chronograph 1 GP 2023 L.E. embraces the cold. The titanium case, fitted with black end-links, crown and pushers is one of the latest editions of Porsche Design’s very first watch, the all-black Chronograph 1. The Calibre Werk 01.240 flyback chronograph movement inside is a proprietary development based on the Valjoux 7750’s architecture. This wintery special edition comes on an extra-long white textile strap that can be worn over a parka, ski or racing suit, as well as a classic black leather strap. All 250 pieces have a price of EUR 8,950.

Porsche Design Chronograph 1 - GP 2023 Limited Edition

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Quick Facts – 40.8mm x 14.15mm – bead-blasted titanium case – black pushers & crown – sapphire crystal – solid caseback – 100m dynamic water-resistant – matte black dial with white markings, indices and hands with Super-LumiNova – red chronograph seconds hand – date-date window – Porsche Design Calibre Werk 01.240, proprietary automatic flyback chronograph – 28,800vph – 38h power reserve – COSC-certified – white textile GP strap with additional black leather strap – limited to 250 pieces – EUR 8,950

Chopard Mille Miglia Classic Chronograph 40mm

When it comes to racing chronographs, the Mille Miglia collection by Chopard naturally comes to mind. For this year, Chopard has reduced the size of its Mille Miglia Classic Chronograph to 40.5mm in diameter and fits it with a matte black dial. Other colours are also available though, and even a two-tone model, but that’s for another time. The dial is finished with an engine-turned pattern, as found on vintage car instrument panels. It’s fitted with an ETA A322.11 automatic chronograph movement that runs at a rate of 28,800vph and delivers 54 hours of running time. Worn on a black rubber strap with a vintage tyre-tread pattern, this stylish racing chrono retails for USD 9,030.

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Quick Facts – 40.5mm x 12.88mm – Lucent Steel S223 case, brushed & polished – box-shaped sapphire crystal & sapphire crystal caseback – knurled crown & pump-style pushers – 50m water-resistant – racing black dial with engine-turned pattern – indices & hands with Super-LumiNova – white tachymeter scale – ETA A322.11, COSC-certified automatic chronograph – 28,800vph – 54h power reserve – hours, minutes, small seconds, chronograph, date – black rubber strap with tyre tread pattern – USD 9,030

Rolex Cosmograph Daytona 126500LN

Racing chronographs don’t come more iconic than the Rolex Daytona. For 2023, celebrating the model’s 60th anniversary, Rolex updated its Cosmograph Daytona in more ways than one. The Oysterseel and white dial Ref. 1226500LN you see here, showcases elements such as the new Oystersteel ring around the Cerachrom bezel, the reworked black rings around the subdials, the slightly retouched indices, and so on. Under the hood, you get the latest generation Rolex technology with the Calibre 4131. Even the Oyster bracelet has been updated ever so slightly! Check out our in-depth review right here for more details. The price for the Rolex Daytona 126500LN is EUR 14,950 but the biggest challenge is getting your hands on one!

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Quick Facts – 40mm x 11.90mm – Oystersteel monobloc case, brushed & polished – sapphire crystal on top – solid caseback – Triplock screw-down crown and pushers – black Cerachrom bezel with tachymetric scale – white dial with black rings for the subdials – applied indices & hands with Chromalight – red “Daytona” mention – Calibre 4131, in-house – integrated automatic chronograph movement – 28,800vph – 72h power reserve – hours, minutes, small seconds, chronograph – Oystersteel 3-link bracelet with folding clasp – Ref. 126500LN – EUR 14,950

Bell & Ross br 05 chrono a523

For seven years running, Bell & Ross has teamed up with the BWT Alpine F1 team, which was previously known as Renault Sport F1. Every year one or multiple limited editions based on the colour scheme of the car are presented, with this year’s BR 05 Chrono A523 taking the honours. The urban-chic sports chronograph gets a matte black dial with an Alpine blue sloped tachymeter flange. Next to that, the chronograph hands are in blue and there’s a French flag on the dial, in reference to the team’s origins. Power comes from the BR-CAL.326, which is based on the automatic Sellita SW510 chronograph movement. Worn on a steel bracelet or two-tone leather strap, this 500-piece limited edition costs EUR 6,990.

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Quick Facts – 42mm x 14.25mm – stainless steel case, brushed & polished – raised steel bezel with functional screws – screw-down crown with guards and pushers – sapphire crystal front & back – 100m water-resistant – matte black dial – sloped tachymeter flange in blue – applied indices & hands with Super-LumiNova – blue chronograph hands – BR-CAl.326 (Sellita SW510 base) – 28,800vph – 60h power reserve – hours, minutes, small seconds, chronograph, date – integrated steel bracelet or black & blue leather strap – limited to 500 pieces – EUR 6,990

5 responses

  1. Breitling Top time with the B01 deserves a mention, auto themed.

  2. People forget the speedmaster was made for racing before the moon

  3. When it comes to chronographs, Daytona and Speedmaster come to my mind immediately. I am surprised the SM was left out. This is followed by IWC, Breitling (both left out) and the Tag Carrera.

  4. Prices seem very expensive but then if they can afford a Porsche.


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