Tesla-TAG Team

Back in the early 1990s, Nicholas Hayek, the guy who was in charge of Swatch, the company that had essentially revolutionized the watch-making business, began to think about the auto industry.

Back in the early 1990s, Nicholas Hayek, the guy who was in charge of Swatch, the company that had essentially revolutionized the watch-making business, began to think about the auto industry. He became interested in the possibility of creating an electric city car. Something small and fashionable. Sort of like a Swatch watch, in effect.

One thing led to another, and in 1994, Daimler-Benz AG and Schweizerische Gesellschaft für Mikroelektronik und Uhrenindustrie (or the Swiss Corporation for Microelectronics and Watchmaking Industries) formed Micro Compact Car (MCC) AG, with a 51/49 ownership split.

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And so the smart car was born. The Swatch-Mercedes collaboration didn’t last long. In 1998, Daimler bought Hayek out.

Arguably, a Swatch watch is to a TAG Heuer timepiece to what a smart fortwo is to a Tesla Roadster.

And not surprisingly, perhaps, TAG Heuer and Tesla Motors have established a worldwide partnership.

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Tesla lead designer Franz von Holzhausen has designed a unique interior based on TAG Heuer design elements, with a specially designed center console into which a new watch—to be unveiled March 18—will be integrated. There is a special exterior color, as well, Foucault Field Gray (presumably named after the Pendulum, not the post-modern philosopher).

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“TAG Heuer has a rich history and expertise with the world’s most prestigious racing teams—but this is the first ever partnership we’ve forged with an electric sports car company,” said Jean-Christophe Babin, president and CEO of the company.

Let’s see: Given the number of electric sports car companies. . . .