Ernie Romers: Oh yes, definitely. At least to a majority of people it is. One of the reasons why Watchuseek remained a leader for all these years is my good contacts in the industry, but most certainly also the way my team has been working for the site. Last but not least, no site can become democratic and a leader without its members and visitors, and the (right) sponsors (finances are important to keep a site growing and up and running).
Technology aside, the 919 Hybrid is a big deal because it marks Porsche's return to endurance racing. To make a long story as short as possible, despite winning the 24 hours of lemans with the 911 GT1, Porsche left factory racing in 1998 due to financial constraints. Porsche is part of the Volkswagen Auto Group, making it part of the same company that owns Audi. Porsche conspiracy theorists allege that Porsche left racing due to an agreement with Audi that allowed Porsche to use the Toureg as the base for their upcoming SUV. In turn, Audi would not have to compete with Porsche in endurance racing. Just four years later, Porsche would launch the Cayenne (which is indeed based on the Toureg). For Audi, prototype endurance racing heated up by 2000, with the R8 and later the R10 TDI dominating for years. With Porsche out of the way, their VAG sister brand had the space it needed to rack up an impressive series of wins within the sport. This is all noteworthy because from 1970 to 1998, Porsche had the most victories (16) at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, the pillar event in endurance racing.
Beyond mere technicalities, another interesting feat is how Arnold & Son - this brand with excessive British watchmaking heritage, modern Swiss manufacturing know-how, and Japanese ownership - manages to consistently turn out complicated, yet tasteful and distinctive-looking watches. Despite the dual-timezone layout and the two large tourbillons all finding their way onto the dial, the face of the watch looks well balanced – something that cannot be said for all other, similarly complex watches. Since there is no one large dial to cover up the movement from the front, what makes these four large circles stand out even more is the traditional Côtes de Genève striping that has been applied to the large, dial-side plate of the movement.
So even if you are a tool watch guy, you will nevertheless inevitably find yourself needing to wear a dress watch once in a while: for a sister’s wedding, a job interview, or accepting an Oscar at the Academy Awards – okay, George Clooney gets his comped by Omega, so never mind. That G-Shock or 18mm thick dive watch isn’t going to cut it with a tux. And while there are dressier quartz watches widely available for reasonable prices, many a true watch lover is turned off by putting on anything but a true mechanical timepiece on their wrist. So, what to do?