Cars and watches go together like fine wine and cheese. Cars, at their core, are mechanical objects that predominantly catch people’s attention because of their striking designs. The same can be said for watches, which could explain why individuals that are drawn toward cars also find themselves yearning for timepieces.
For car enthusiasts that want to expand their love and passion for anything on four wheels to their timepieces, there are quite a few companies offering watches that are inspired by the automotive industry. From watches that are priced similarly to a mansion to ones that are roughly one month’s salary, there’s something for everyone when it comes to the wonderful world of watches.
In no particular order, here are our favorite watches that are sure to catch an enthusiast’s eye.
Costing nearly as much as one of Ferrari’s supercars, the Hublot MP-05 LaFerrari Sapphire is, as its name implies, a watch that honors the LaFerrari. Just 20 examples of the watch were made and the watch, just like the hybrid LaFerrari, looks like nothing else on the market. The movement, which is encased in a sapphire crystal that’s comprised of seven parts, has a total of 637 parts and 108 jewels. The unique shape is meant to mimic the LaFerrari’s engine bay, with the mechanical movement on the inside epitomizing the car’s engine. This is the ultimate watch for the ultimate Ferrari collector.
Bremont claims that its watches are hand-built in the U.K., which makes its partnership with Jaguar, another British-based company, quite fitting. Bremont offers multiple Jaguar-inspired watches, but our favorite is the MKI, a watch that’s inspired by Jaguar’s lightweight E-Type coupes from 1963. A “red-line” quadrant that’s spaced between 3 and 4 o’clock signifies the engine’s redline, while the hands are similarly styled to the needles drivers will find in the dials. Stylish, classy, and British, this watch certainly looks like a Jaguar for someone’s wrist.
While a lot of watches on this list draw inspiration from classics or sports cars, the Zenith El Primero Range Rover Special Edition is all about bringing attention to one of the best SUVs on the market: the Land Rover Range Rover. An all-black case and brushed dial give the hefty 42 mm chronograph a hardened look, just like one of Land Rover’s capable SUVs. Unlike other Land Rover-inspired pieces from Zenith, this one has “Range Rover” written prominently on it in three locations. With that in mind, it may not appeal to non-Range Rover owners, but it’s still a handsome timepiece for those looking to add some bling to their wrist.
If there’s one watch that every enthusiast knows about it’s the Rolex Daytona. Starting at $13,150, the Rolex Daytona certainly isn’t cheap, but the only other way you’ll manage to nab one is by winning the 24 Hours of Daytona at the Daytona International Speedway. And yes, the watch is named after Daytona, Florida. Introduced back in 1963, the Rolex Daytona was developed with racing in mind and has since solidified its place in automotive racing history.
The Seiko X Giugiaro is special for a few reasons. One, it was designed by Giorgetto Giugiaro, one of the founders of Italdesign Giugiaro, an iconic Italian automobile designer that has penned some of the prettiest cars, like the De Tomaso Mangusta. The other point is that it was worn by Ripley in a little 1986 film called Aliens. You might have heard of it. Futuristic and classic at the same time, the Seiko X Giugiaro watch has one of the more interesting pusher designs, as they’re housed in what looks like a separate entity hanging onto the side of the watch. It being a Seiko means that it’s one of the more affordable watches on this list, but you’ll probably have a hard time finding one in decent condition second-hand.
Just as with the Ford GT, which required consumers to jump through hoops that included filling out applications to be eligible to purchase one of its supercars, Autodromo’s special Ford GT Owners Edition Chronograph also has unique requirements. The main crux being you have to purchase a Ford GT to get the darn thing. After that, all you have to do is pony up the extra cash and you’re getting a one-of-a-kind watch that has a matching chassis number to your car.
There are, of course, tons of touches that will give GT owners something to ogle at besides their car. The crown looks like a smaller version of the scrollers you’ll find on the steering wheel, the case mirrors the GT’s front splitter, and the design of the pushers are based on the supercar’s paddle shifters. If you can’t afford a new GT – don’t be sad, neither can 99% of the rest of us – Autodromo does offer the Ford GT Endurance Chronograph. That one is much more affordable at just $695 and you don’t have to own a GT to buy it.
Breitling and Bentley have what they claim to be the longest-running partnership between a watch company and an automaker. So, they’ve turned out quite a lot of cool stuff. One of our favorites is the Breitling Bentley GT Dark Sapphire. Built to match the 2018 Continental GT, the watch utilizes carbon polymer to be incredibly light and durable. You’ll also get Dark Sapphire touches (which is a similar color to what’s offered on the car), a rubber strap with a diamond pattern, and a chronograph with an accuracy of up to one-eighth of a second.
When it comes to modified classic Porsches, Singer reigns supreme. Modifying everything from the chassis to the engine, Singer builds drool-worthy creations, so it’s only natural to see the brand have one of the prettiest automotive-related watches. The Track 1 Launch Edition’s tonneau-shaped case gives the timepiece a classic feel, just like its cars. Classic orange and green accents throughout the piece make it look like it’s something from the ‘70s. Instead of having a small chronograph display, the inner circle acts as a chronograph. This being a sports watch and all, it makes plenty of sense. For those of us who can’t afford one of Singer’s exquisite 911s, this is the next best thing.
The Tourbillon McLaren F1 RM 50-03 has an insanely long name and an incredibly high price tag. But that’s exactly what one would expect after hearing that the watch is geared toward the world of Formula 1. When the watch came out in 2017, it was the lightest split-second chronograph ever made, weighing in at just 40 grams (1.41 ounces if you prefer that measure). Hollowed-out chronograph pushers, a massive crown that’s designed similarly to a rim, and an available strap that mimics a seatbelt are all meant to bring designs from F1 cars over to the watch. Even if you’re not a fan of the McLaren F1 team, this watch is the best way to show your passion for one of the most grueling and expensive forms of motorsports in the world.
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