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Gift Guide 2022

TAG Heuer 980.031 Night-Diver

Catalog scan: OntheDash.com via Calibre11
TAG Heuer 980.031 Night-Diver as pictured in a 1985 catalog.
Catalog scan: OntheDash.com via Calibre11

photo © Danjaq LLC, United Artists
The watch worn by James Bond can only be seen very briefly during the struggle in the Land Rover Series II in the opening sequence of The Living Daylights.
photo © Danjaq LLC, United Artists

photo © Danjaq LLC, United Artists
The black jubilee-style bracelet can be just spotted in this frame from the film.
photo © Danjaq LLC, United Artists

James Bond (played by Timothy Dalton) probably wears a TAG Heuer 980.031 Night-Diver watch in The Living Daylights (1987).

The watch doesn't get much screentime and can only barely be seen during the opening sequence in Gibraltar, when Bond is riding on on the roof of a Land Rover Series III.

Identification of the watch has been done by Bond watch expert Dell Deaton and Paul Gavin and Calibre11, and you can read a full account of the research in this article on Calibre11.com.

According to their research, the most likely model is the TAG Heuer 980.031 with black PVD case and luminescent dial with darkened indices. The dial appears white with a slight yellow hue in daylight, but glows in the dark if it has received enough sunlight.

Since there is no proper photo or screenshot of the watch in the film that shows the details of the dial, we can't be sure if Bond's watch has the "Heuer" logo or the "TAG Heuer" logo.

In the same film, General Pushkin also wears a TAG Heuer watch, which actually has a gadget feature installed by the Soviet equivalent of Q branch: if the general pushes the crown, an alarm goes off with his private security guard.

The company began as Uhrenmanufaktur Heuer AG, founded in 1860 by Edouard Heuer in St-Imier, Switzerland. Watches like the famous Monaco model worn by Steve McQueen had the Heuer logo on the dial. In 1985, TAG Group purchased a majority stake in the company, forming TAG Heuer. In the years that followed, the dial changed to the "TAG Heuer" logo. The TAG Heuer 980.031 is available both with Heuer and TAG Heuer logo.

2021 updated model

In 2021, TAG Heuer released an updated model of the Night-Diver as a new variant of its Aquaracer Night Diver Professional 300 Collection, ref. WBP201D.FT6197. This watch has a 43mm stainless-steel case, bezel, crown, caseback and clasp all coated in matte black diamond-like carbon (DLC). The watch also features the luminescent dial as a nod to the Heuer watches from the 1980s with that feature.

Available for $3,350 (retail price), or on sale at JomaShop ($2,800).

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TAG Heuer in other films

Heuer and TAG Heuer have appeared in many other films and several celebrities have been hired to endorse the brand, see an overview of movie sightings on Watch-ID.com.

Product Code: 
ga108

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