Intrepid video game icon Mario – as in Super Mario – is the subject of a new collaboration between TAG Heuer and Nintendo, who have worked together to bring the plump plumber to life in a limited edition luxury smartwatch. And while it may have come out of nowhere, it makes sense that Nintendo’s most successful character, built on the idea of constantly staying active, should walk, run or jump into the hearts of TAG Heuer fans with the TAG Heuer Connected Super Mario watch.
With nostalgia caked into the new TAG Heuer Connected Super Mario watch, the limited edition release will see just 2,000 pieces offered from the launch date on July 15th. Available online, or via selected TAG Heuer boutiques around the world, the 45mm smartwatch will boast a unique Super Mario dial to complement the suite of features Connected watch users have come to love. These include a heart rate monitor, GPS, compass, accelerometer, metrics, and recorded activities with third-party integration, gamifying goals and helping wearers achieve them throughout the day, with real-time feedback, in tandem with the house-designed TAG Heuer Sport app.
Arriving in a steel case with a very comfortable rubber strap, the TAG Heuer Connected Super Mario watch provides excellent wearability for any land or water-based activities, down to 5ATM (50m). The 430 mAh battery should provide wearers enough juice for a full day under normal usage conditions – that is, 20 hours with 1 hour of activity, and 6 hours for more intensive sports use utilising the GPS, heart rate, and music functions.
“For this collaboration with Nintendo, Super Mario instantly came to our minds”, said Frédéric Arnault, CEO of TAG Heuer. “And it’s not just his international and intergenerational appeal that clinched it. Mario is the ultimate super-active character whose perseverance and tenacity get him out of every situation”.
The most unique feature of the TAG Heuer connected is not just the seamless blend of smartwatch with traditional chronograph, it’s the exclusive watch dial. The Swiss watchmaking icons have taken the idea of gamification a bit further than expected, where Mario springs to life as a dynamic character, greeting the wearer with a welcoming salute in the morning, and becoming more animated as the day goes on and as those fitness goals are kicked.
Mario’s presence on the watch was apparently inspired by the idea of “Easter eggs” in video games, which for the unfamiliar, typically involves game designers hiding features and surprises as bonuses for players to unlock while they play through the story. As the wearer racks up their step count, the watch unlocks rewards at each stage of the set daily target.
The other elements of the dial represent TAG Heuer’s playful take on their famous Connected watch faces, reinterpreted across four versions where dials include special details nodding to the history of Super Mario and Nintendo. This includes two versions of the Heuer 02 watch face – one reskinned and remixed with Super Mario’s emblematic red and blue colours, and the other with subtle touches of the plumber’s signature red hat.
The Timekeeping dial leans more towards retro elements from the 1985 version of Super Mario Bros., featuring the titular character in pixel form. This is contrasted with the Orbital watch face version, where the usual neural network is replaced by Super Mario iconography rotating in a mesmerising movement.
Nintendo references aren’t restricted to the dial. On the exterior, the TAG Heuer Connected Limited Edition features a bezel graduation, push buttons, and crown logo designed with the same colour of Mario’s red hat, dramatically separating it from the core Connected collection.
The bezel has been designed with three Super Mario booster symbols at the 3 o’clock, 6 o’clock, and 9 o’clock positions, aligning with the Mario icons included in the dial animations so wearers can unlock and constantly discover new items while they are out achieving their fitness goals in real life.
TAG Heuer has also reworked the case, with comes with two straps in a quick-change system – a black leather strap on red rubber, and an additional perforated rubber strap in Super Mario red. Even the folding clasp has been engraved with the Super Mario logo, reiterating just how generous with the Nintendo references TAG Heuer has been.
On the back of the TAG Heuer Connected Super Mario watch, the case-back is inscribed and co-branded with “TAG Heuer x Super Mario Limited Edition”.
But the playful design doesn’t stop there. The TAG Heuer x Super Mario Limited Edition comes presented in a package designed exclusively for this collaboration, with a travel case in Super Mario red.
The limited edition watch launches on July 15 and will be available both online and at selected TAG Heuer boutiques.