After years of the TAG Heuer Connected showing that luxury timepieces and smartwatches can coexist, at least in this one particular instance, the Swiss watchmaker is finally giving everyone (and by that I mean myself) the watch they’ve always wanted: the Connected Super Mario edition.
When the collaboration with Nintendo was teased a week ago, it could only mean one thing. It was never going to be a mechanical timepiece; that’d go down like a metal mushroom down a mine. Instead, TAG Heuer has taken the opportunity to finally have a bit of fun with their seminal smartwatch.
It makes a modicum of sense; Mario’s tried his hand at every sport known to man in his now 35 years of mascotdom. Tennis, golf, football, curling, every Olympic sport ever, he’s done them all. If TAG Heuer needed their own mascot for wellness, there’s no more iconic behatted Italian.
Subtle it is not. The blue and red of the world’s most famous plumber’s cap and overalls are all over the new watch, both on the shiny new digital dial and 45mm case proper, with his signature M logo on the crown. Around the edge of the bezel you’ll see a mushroom at 3 o’clock, a pipe at 6 and a star at 9. Personally, I reckon a fire flower would have fit in the middle better, but there’s a reason TAG has picked these three, which we’ll get to.
If you need the kind of achievement-centric incentives that force players to get every platinum Playstation trophy then this may be the workout watch for you. In their own words, TAG Heuer has ‘gamified’ the entire connected experience, which basically means encouragements from a paunchy Italian to hit certain milestones.
As you rack up your step count throughout the day, Mario will show off a different animation, ranging from a hat flourish at 0%, mushroom growth at 25%, popping out of a pipe at 50%, glowing from an invincibility star at 75% and finally climbing a Goal Pole at 100%. You can keep track of your progress via a bar around the edge of the dial, with the mushroom, pipe and star on the bezel indicating the completion goals.
Now, admittedly most of this is novelty over serious watchmaking, but I love it. Then again, I’ve slogged my way through Mario Bros 2 and found Yoshi in Mario 64 so I’m probably not the best person to judge. Either way, it’s a fun take on the Connected.
Whether it’s a bit too much of a novelty to cost £1,800 is definitely worth considering. But if it starts up with an ‘it’s a me, Mario!’ I’m sold. Now to find my nearest TAG Heuer boutique to see if I can pay in vintage Game Boy cartridges.
Price & Specs:
Model: TAG Heuer Connected x Super Mario Limited Edition
Case/Dial: 45mm diameter x 13.5mm height, stainless steel, digital dial
Water resistance: 50m (5 bar)
Power Reserve: One full day under normal usage conditions (20 hours with 1 hour of activity), 6 hours for sports use (GPS, heart rate and music), charge time: full charge in 1 hour 30 minutes
Functions: Hour, minutes, seconds, step counter, date, day
Strap: Black leather on red rubber with additional perforated rubber strap in Super Mario red
Price/availability: £1,800, limited to 2,000 pieces
More details at TAG Heuer.