The Link is actually one of TAG Heuer’s most redesigned modern-era watches, with a host of models that have existed in the collection’s history starting in 1987. That means that, for 2017, the TAG Heuer Link collection turns 30 years old, and on this occasion, TAG Heuer offers a brand new design for both men and women. This is the TAG Heuer Link Calibre 5 collection replica for men, which debuts the new TAG Heuer Link case, dial, and bracelet. A women’s collection in a 36mm-wide case also exists, with quartz movements.
2017 sees three silver-plated dial color versions of the TAG Heuer Link Calibre 5 which are silver, blue, or a dark gray (black) color. The case is all steel and 41mm wide, with a sort of cushion-style look which is integrated into the tapering Link bracelet. The case/bracelet integration makes for a cohesive look similar in concept to the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak or Patek Philippe Nautilus, which is one good reason such designs have endured for so long.
One design element which very much defines the 2017 TAG Heuer Link models is case polishing. Many of the Link watches I remember have all brushed/satin polished cases, whereas the 2017 collection has contrasting polished and brushed surfaces. This is most apparent in the bracelet, which with this new amount of polish offers a lot of shine compared to more matte-finished TAG Heuer Link bracelets of a while ago. Interestingly enough, TAG Heuer makes some other watches with Link-style bracelets in both the Carrera and Formula 1 collections (most notably the Senna watches – as Ayrton Senna wore a Link watch in the early 1990s).
Inside the TAG Heuer Link for 2017 is a TAG Heuer Calibre 5 three-hand automatic mechanical movement, which is a base Swiss Sellita SW200. This is very similar to an ETA 2824 and operates at 4Hz with about two days of power reserve. You can see the movement through the sapphire crystal on the rear of the case. Unfortunately, the movement is more or less totally un-decorated, so the view through the back of the case for seasoned watch lovers leaves a bit to be desired.
The case is water resistant to 100 meters, and over the dial is a flat, AR-coated sapphire crystal. With all the curves of the case, I sort of wonder what the TAG Heuer Link would look like with a slightly domed sapphire crystal. The dial’s hour markers and hands are very well-proportioned with the latter being extremely well-sized (which I always highly appreciate). While most dress watches are a bit more subdued and discreet, the dial of the TAG Heuer Link is filled with large-sized elements ranging from the hands and the hour markers to the text and TAG Heuer logo itself. This is the most “larger than life” TAG Heuer Link I’ve ever seen.
Small details throughout the entire design help round out a sense of refinement, even if the combination of case design, dial, and bracelet don’t work for everyone. As I mentioned, I like the bracelet design, complicated polishing, and even things like the slightly tapering crown and crown guards. This is a macho dress watch for a new generation of mechanical watch wearers, and they aren’t priced too bad given the generous level of detail. The 2017 TAG Heuer Link models include the reference WBC2111.BA0603 (silver-plated dial), WBC2110.BA0603 (black dial), and WBC2112.BA0603 (blue sunray dial).