It’s not often a single part of a car gains a legendary status in the community of petrolheads. From the top of my mind, the horizontal slats on the Ferrari Testarossa, the split rear window on the 1963 Chevrolet Corvette or Rolls Royce’s Spirit of Extacy comes to mind. But plenty of others of course have cemented their place in automotive history. One such icon is the Otto Fuchs wheel, mostly associated with classic Porsche cars from the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s. It even has its own Wikipedia page! The wheel design is so well-respected that it inspired several watches, with Union Glashütte presenting the latest take with its new Noramis Date Limited Edition Deutschland Klassik 2023.
The Fuchs wheel was designed by Otto Fuchs in collaboration with Porsche designer Heinrich Klie and Ferdinand Alexander “Butzi” Porsche. It was the first forged lightweight wheel to be used on a production road car and was introduced on the 1967 Porsche 911S. It grew into a true motoring icon and can be spotted on countless Porsches, VW Beetles, and other classics. The Otto Fuchs company is still producing it to this day, in a range of historically inspired yet modernised designs. And now it has found its way into a watch again, courtesy of Union Glashütte. The brand has partnered with the ADAC Deutschland Klassik 2023, an annual classic car rally scheduled for May 24th through May 27th.
This limited edition is based on the Noramis Date and its 40mm wide and 10.4mm stainless steel case. The case is fully polished and has a simple yet attractive profile. The sapphire crystal on top is domed, with a sapphire crystal covering the movement around the back. The screw-down crown ensured a water resistance of 100 meters, which is pretty decent for a time-and-date watch!
Union Glashütte has faithfully transferred the iconic five-star shape of the Fuchs wheel onto the dial. It is instantly recognizable for what it is, thanks to the raised brushed profile of the spokes against the black sections, and details such as the screw heads replicating the wheel nuts. The outer rim holds a black printed minute track with triangular makers for every quarter of an hour. Time is indicated with two-tone polished and black hour and minute hands with a vintage green Super-LumiNova insert. The second hand is black, with a white tip.
The selected movement for this special edition model remains the same UNG-07.S1 we know from the very colourful Noramis Date series we covered earlier in the year. This ETA-based movement (UG is part of the Swatch Group after all) comes with an anti-magnetic silicon hairspring, a frequency of 3.5Hz instead of 4Hz (25,200vph versus 28,800vph) and a power reserve of 60 hours in total. The sapphire crystal caseback reveals a ‘Union’ signed rotor, although no image was provided with the press kit.
This cool Union Glashütte Noramis Date Limited Edition Deutschland Klassik 2023 is produced in a run of 200 pieces, all worn on a beige nubuck leather strap with cream-coloured stitches. It’s secured to the wrist with a steel double-folding clasp. It retails for EUR 2,680 and should make a cool addition next to any car that sits on the iconic Otto Fuchs wheel.
For more information, please visit Union-Glashuette.com