The original TAG Heuer 1000 Night Diver – so called because of its full lume dial – was a massive hit for the brand in the late 1980s, helping it to recover from the crippling effects of Quartz Crisis and even earning some serious screen time on the wrist of Timothy Dalton’s James Bond in The Living Daylights.
While the original watch was mid-sized at 37mm and mostly sold with a quartz movement, the new Tag Heuer Aquaracer Professional 300 Night Diver uses a 43mm black DLC sandblasted steel case and a Calibre 5 Automatic movement.
The watch also features a black ceramic unidirectional rotating bezel with a 60-minute diving scale, sapphire crystal with double anti-reflective treatment and a black DLC steel screw-down crown helping it achieve a 300m water resistance rating.
The Night Diver’s dial is fully coated with white Super-LumiNova, which is also used on the hands and hour markers at the cardinal points, while the remaining octagonal markers are finished with black lacquer. A colour-matched date window sits at the six o’clock underneath a cyclops magnifying lens and the watch is supplied on a black rubber strap with a black DLC steel folding clasp with fine adjustment system.
While the new Aquaracer Professional 300 maintains the same silhouette as the previous model, make no mistake that the new watch represents a significant step forward for the Aquaracer line. There’s a re-profiled and polished case, a redesigned caseback, new bracelet and rubber straps, an updated dial, new hands and a revised bezel. It’s a long list. So it’s somehow both familiar, yet all-new at the same time.
Launched today at the Watches & Wonders online watch fair, the Tag Heuer Aquaracer Professional 300 Calibre 5 collection are the first new watches in the revised Aquaracer family, which will extend to other models and movements over the coming months. And yes, while the previous watch was the Aquaracer 300m, the new one is the Aquaracer Professional 300– no “m”.
The Aquaracer Professional 300 is the first major redesign of the Aquaracer series since 2014 and brings back the “Professional” name, which was added to the dial of TAG Heuer dive watches during the 1980 and 90s. As we ran through the changes in the spec sheets, there are two key themes that we kept coming back to. Firstly, the new range steps up the quality of materials and finishing to justify a higher price point and secondly, TAG Heuer’s designers have enthusiastically embraced the 12-sided bezel as a key design thematic, with dodecagons featuring prominently.
Each of the five Aquaracer Professional 300 models uses the same basic 43mm case design, which may look the same as the 43mm 2014 Aquaracer 300m, but is actually thinner and lighter and with shorter lugs- a similar principle applied to the 2020 Carrera redesign. Despite these changes it’s no lightweight, and there’s no sign yet of the 41mm option many hoped for, but it’s a clear step in the right direction.Look carefully and you’ll also notice the reprofiled crown guards, which are inspired by the original 844/ 1000 series.
Adding to the up-scale push is the more refined case finishing, a combination of brushed surfaces with polished highlights. It’s a handsome, strong case with a fresh look, but still very much an Aquaracer.The bezel has also been updated, with the main change being the deletion of the bezel grips that have long been part of the 2000/ Aquaracer look. The result is a cleaner, more classic bezel.