On 8th March 2017, Kazunori Yamauchi, Executive Vice-President of Sony Interactive Entertainment Worldwide Studios Inc. and 'Gran Turismo' series Producer — and Jean-Claude Biver, CEO of TAG Heuer & President of the LVMH Group Watch division, confirmed that TAG Heuer will be the Official Time Keeper in Gran Turismo Sport. Polyphony Digital has integrated TAG Heuer’s Live Timing Technology into Gran Turismo Sport, providing unparalleled timing solutions within the racing experience. Led by its CEO, Jean-Claude Biver, TAG Heuer is continuing to connect with the youth of today, keeping more closely in touch with the 21st century and its trends.
The Gran Turismo franchise has sold 76,910,000 copies worldwide (as of December 2016), and the latest iteration in the franchise, Gran Turismo Sport, is due to launch in 2017 on PlayStation®4. Always at the cutting edge of interactive entertainment, Gran Turismo Sport has chosen TAG Heuer as the game's first ever watch partner. It is also the first time TAG Heuer has partnered with a leading videogame publisher.
The partnership was unveiled at the 87th Geneva International Motor Show, at the TAG Heuer stand, surrounded by exceptional racing cars, including showcars from the F1 Red Bull Racing Team and FIA Formula e Championship, both of which are partnered by TAG Heuer.
Jean-Claude Biver issued this statement: "TAG Heuer's history is intertwined with the world of motor racing. I am very proud to announce our brand's association with the world of digital entertainment. TAG Heuer's integration into Gran Turismo Sport powers us with great pride. It is a first for a watch brand. We share the same passion and, thanks to this new partnership, TAG Heuer will appear on millions of screens in homes across the world, enabling us to be better connected to the younger generations than ever before."
Kazunori Yamauchi added: "Tag Heuer who have been making history in partnership with the shining legends of motorsports such as Steve McQueen, Ayrton Senna and Red Bull Racing, is a perfect project partner for Gran Turismo Sport, which aims to redefine the next 100 years of motorsport history. I am certain that the live timing technology of Tag Heuer will bring a level of reality to Gran Turismo Sport equal to the real world motorsport. In addition, this project will be a great opportunity to bring a breakthrough in new technology and design to the future of the Connected watch, which is a crossroad for watches and software technology."
Physically on the circuits at championship venues, and in front rooms, on-screens and consoles, the association between TAG Heuer and Gran Turismo Sport is the most natural of partnerships. TAG Heuer has been supporting major motor racing teams, with a presence on the most famous circuits, ever since it was founded.
Fittingly, when deciding to wear a watch for the first time in many years, Kazunori Yamauchi chose a TAG Heuer... He was instinctively drawn to the Swiss brand when the search for a watch partner was first mooted, to bring the game in line with all the major racing events across the world. So, TAG Heuer has become the first Official Timekeeper and Official Watch in Gran Turismo Sport.
Polyphony Digital has integrated TAG Heuer’s Live Timing Technology into Gran Turismo Sport, providing unparalleled timing solutions within the racing experience.
As part of this new partnership, the Gran Turismo Sport video game integrates the watch brand on its screens as the Official Timekeeper and Official Watch. Fans will be able to discover not just legendary stages from motor racing history, but also the history of TAG Heuer within the racing world.
For example, one of the innovative features is the TAG Heuer museum section in Gran Turismo Sport, where players can learn about historical events from arts, geo-political, automotive and from TAG Heuer. Each Museum “story” is brought to life by imagery and text.
Gran Turismo Sport also includes an area called “Brand Central” where users can discover the values of TAG Heuer, a unique communication opportunity for the Swiss luxury watch brand within Gran Turismo Sport, reaching millions of players around the world.