The time is right for Gulf Oil International and TAG Heuer
TAG Heuer launches a special Gulf edition of its renowned Monaco watch, which sports Gulf’s legendary racing colours
At last week’s Geneva Motor Show opening day, Gulf Oil International announced that a new global partnership has been signed with TAG Heuer, which will see the development of joint activities between the two brands and new watch editions – including the Monaco Gulf which was launched on the occasion of the signing.
With its instantly recognisable blue and orange racing stripes, Gulf has been active in the automotive industry for over 115 years. Quality, endurance and passion are the company’s watchwords; proven by their history of innovation, invention and continuing development. Gulf was the first company to drill for oil below the sea and, in 1913, became the first in the world to open a drive-in fuel station.
Gulf shares values with the Swiss watchmaking brand that has automotive sport in its DNA. TAG Heuer and Gulf have crossed paths several times, and have won races and titles together, with arguably their most notable collaboration being the 1971 film “Le Mans”, when Steve McQueen wore a Heuer Monaco on his wrist while driving a Gulf-Porsche 917. Gulf and TAG Heuer are also both current partners with the world’s number one football brand, Manchester United.
Frank Rutten, Vice President International of Gulf, added: “TAG Heuer is an iconic brand for automotive sport and our two brands have many shared highlights, stretching back over nearly half a century. We’re delighted with this partnership and look forward to developing it, representing, as it does, a new direction for the relationship between Gulf Oil International and TAG Heuer. Timing is of critical importance to many aspects of our business – Gulf has, for instance, a peerless “on time in full delivery record” in its marine operation – we share values of innovation and quality but, in particular, our shared history ensures that this is one of the most genuine unions in the automotive world.”
Jean-Claude Biver, CEO of TAG Heuer and Chairman of the Watch Division of LVMH Group, stated: “It’s a real privilege to forge links with Gulf and its history in automotive sport that includes the Porsche 917K, Steve McQueen, the Le Mans 24 Hour Race and the Monaco watch. It’s a prestigious and emotional partnership. I know of few other brands that could share as many memories of pit stops and which have a relationship as strong and authentic. We share the same passion and this promises good things for the future!”
The first fruits of the new partnership: the TAG Heuer Monaco Gulf 2018 Special Edition
Gulf’s iconic racing colours are referenced in the design of the Monaco Calibre 11 Gulf special edition. As a reminder of its origins and sporting pedigree, a light blue and an orange stripe of Gulf’s renowned racing colours have been added to the dial. The Gulf logo also appears at 6 o’clock. The piece is completed by an exquisite petroleum blue leather strap with orange topstitching, for an elegant look and another nod to the Gulf logo.
The Monaco is one of the world’s most instantly recognisable watches. Launched simultaneously in Geneva and New York on 3rd March 1969, the Heuer Monaco was the first square and water-resistant automatic chronograph in the history of Swiss watchmaking. The watch was a break with the aesthetic codes of traditional watchmaking and, just as innovative at the time, its technology offered perfect water resistance – a first for a square watch.
This beautiful interpretation respects the iconic automotive heritage of both the Swiss manufacturer and the famous fuel and lubricant brand.
To celebrate the new partnership TAG Heuer’s stand at the Geneva Motor Show is featuring the first car to carry Gulf’s light blue and orange racing colours, the Mirage-Ford M1.
The car, essentially a coupe version of the legendary Ford GT40 first appeared in 1967 and was one of two team cars from Gulf’s first year in World Championship Endurance motor racing. The car is now one of the key exhibits in the ROFGO Collection of Gulf racing vehicles – who kindly made this historic car available for the show.