To mark the opening of the Grossglockner Hochalpenstraße and the ‘Mankei’ – GP’s new multipurpose location, which combines a restaurant, cafe, accommodation and a meeting place for all motor sport fans from anywhere in the world – Porsche Design has specially developed a textile/leather strap in recognition of the place where petrolheads and members of the F.A.T. & GP community will soon be able to come together which is available for the coveted Chronograph 1 – GP 2023 Edition, it is known as the ‘Mankei strap’. A tranche of 50 pieces of the Chronograph 1 – GP 2023 Edition, which was limited to 250 pieces and is almost sold out, was held back exclusively for the event.
Mankei is not only the local, colloquial name for the marmot native to this part of the Alps, but also the name of the new summer location on the Grossglockner and the textile/leather strap specially developed for the occasion of its opening. That means that the opening of the Mankei provides the exclusive opportunity to purchase one of the last of the highly coveted timepieces – with the ‘Mankei strap’, of course. Those who already own the chronograph can add the ‘Mankei strap’ to their collection free of charge, but exclusively on location.
As is the case with the chronograph itself, the GP team was closely involved in the design process with the engineers at the Porsche watch manufactory in Solothurn, Switzerland: consequently, the ‘Mankei strap’, like the chronograph, features some GP tweaks. The colour scheme is a reference to the facade of the Mankei building, while the embossing of the coordinates on the inside of the strap reveals its precise location. Icons from the dashboards of current Porsche models are also featured: a mountain with a stylised road as a reference to the popular Hochalpenstraße, and a coffee cup, as the Mankei is a suitable spot to take a break on the mountain.
The ‘Mankei strap’ is a Porsche Design soft strap made of a combination of textile and leather: the underside of the strap is made from the same calfskin used in the interiors of sports cars from the Stuttgart-based vehicle manufacturer. The Porsche Design lettering in a historic typeface links the strap and chronograph, while the upper side of the strap is made of durable polyester with a textile structure. Specially developed metal end pieces with an integrated quick-change system make it possible to change the strap quickly and securely, and the black-coated pin buckle with a historic Porsche Design icon allows convenient adjustment of the strap length. These are details that clearly distinguish the Porsche Design ‘Mankei strap’ from a commonly available NATO strap.
Ferdi Porsche and Constantin Klein have incorporated their thoughts and ideas into the development phase with the design team at Studio F. A. Porsche in Zell am See, closely accompanying the subsequent realization of the chronograph at Porsche’s very own watch manufactury in Solothun, Switzerland. The result is a timepiece that is based on the original model from 1972, yet successfully embodies a new zeitgeist through refined design accents and functions that have been further developed – manufactured in a strictly limited edition of 250 pieces.
In the development process of the new timepiece, GP's focus was on optimizing its function as a timekeeping instrument at and on the race track: the 60-minute scaling of the bezel, the colored finish of the stop hands in classic Porsche red, the colored contrast of the pushers and crown in contrasting black, as well as the weight optimization by dispensing with the case coating – these details are not only stylistic elements, but above all guarantee optimal readability and measuring accuracy of the sporty timepiece.
The GP 2023 Edition also features two bracelet variants. And here, too, function determines design: the modern white GP badge, which we recognize from the GP 2022 Edition, ensures a high level of functionality, since the textile strap enables the watch to be put on quickly and worn comfortably over a ski or racing suit. Wearing the watch over a jacket is very popular in skijoring, a traditional winter sport in which skiers were originally pulled across the ice by horses and today by horsepower in the form of racing cars. Again, these details show how well the chronograph has been thought out and adapted to the special needs of the GP Ice Race. As an alternative to the special GP badge, the strap is also available as a classic black version made of fine vehicle leather and with a matte black titanium folding clasp.
As the Chronograph 1 edition model, the design of the GP timepiece is finfaithfully based on its iconic model, the Chronograph I from 1972: white contrasting seconds, minute and hour hands, fluorescent hour indices, seven-fold anti-reflective, scratch-resistant sapphire glass with hardened coating, and powerfully luminous Super-LumiNova, ensuring optimum legibility on the matte black dial and the hands through maximum contrast – details that echo the 911 dashboard.
In addition, it was important to the GP team and Ferdi Porsche to use the historic Porsche Design logo on the dial, crown, buckle as well as on the back of the case as a reminder of F. A. Porsche. As already mentioned, however, it would not be a “real” timepiece in the sense of the Porsche Design founder if its functionality had not been further developed with relevant features. This is why small yet significant differences from the original can be seen – be it the pointed minute hand (rectangular in the original), the red stop hands (white in the original), or the uncoated silver titanium case.
The timepiece is powered extremely precisely by the Porsche Design Calibre WERK 01.240 with flyback function and COSC certification, innovative quick-switch date display, and bilingual day display – developed in Porsche Design’s own watch manufactory in Solothurn, Switzerland. The case is dynamically water-resistant to 10 bar and has a diameter of 40.8 mm. The case back of the watch features the edition number, the historic original Porsche Design logo, and a special highlight – the laser engraving of the GP signet in the shape of a Yeti sitting on a tractor. The high-quality timepiece is perfectly presented in a black box with a laser-engraved acrylic plaque. A must-have for all watch enthusiasts and Porsche aficionados.