When it comes to sporting sponsorships, it pays to back winners and to go global.
Lewis Hamilton’s sixth World Championship victory, which he crowned with a win at the final Grand Prix of the season in Abu Dhabi at the weekend, could not fit the bill any better.
He is even a bit of a fashion icon and social media giant with 13.7 million followers on Instagram.
IWC, which is official timekeeper for Mr Hamilton’s Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport F1 team, is certainly getting its money’s worth with the association.
To celebrate the sixth championship win, IWC has made a Lewis Hamilton Big Pilot’s Watch Perpetual Calendar Edition, limited to 100 watches, in a black zirconium oxide ceramic case with a Bordeaux-red dial.
“Lewis approached us with the idea of a watch in Bordeaux-red and gold,” explains Christian Knoop, IWC’s head designer. “Our starting point was the Big Pilot’s Watch Perpetual Calendar – a favourite model of Hamilton’s. We decided on a case made of black ceramic with hints of gold and a Bordeaux-red dial and textile strap. This combination radiates understated luxury.”
“Together, we’ve designed a beautiful timepiece which combines two things I am really passionate about – craftsmanship and design – and I am so pleased with the result,” Mr Hamilton adds.
The 46.5mm watch houses a highly complicated IWC-made 52615 automatic movement.
Mr Hamilton is always quick to recognise that winning is not a solo pursuit, and IWC has also made a Big Pilot’s Watch Perpetual Calendar Edition Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport in celebration of his team’s creation of the perfect racing car for the 2018-19 season.
Only 10 of the watch will be made, which comes in a matte black zirconium oxide ceramic case with black carbon fibre dial and accents in the emerald green team colour.
It also uses the 52614 automatic movement, which has a seven day power reserve.
In addition, there will be 50 pieces made of a smaller Pilot’s Watch Chronograph Edition Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport, which comes in a 44.5mm black ceramic case with a black carbon fibre dial that again uses the Petronas green for accents. It uses the IWC-manufactured calibre 89361.