Fortis Spaceleader Chronograph by Volkswagen Design – Click above for high-res image

You might figure that, with Porsche now under the Volkswagen umbrella, we'd see fewer overlaps in the group's expansive product portfolio. But remember, this is the auto giant that brought out the Phaeton to compete with its own Audi sedans, and the Audi R8 to battle its own Lamborghinis, to name just a couple of overlapping examples. So perhaps it should come as little surprise that Volkswagen is delving into Porsche Design territory with a wristwatch of its own.

The Fortis Spaceleader Chronograph by Volkswagen Design is already bringing in design awards aplenty, including the prestigious iF product design award, Red Dot design award and the Good Design award. The VW stylists redesigned the case of the classic chrono, wrapping it in tactile rubber that melds from the bezel to the strap, affixed by a butterfly clasp. Looks like a pretty slick timepiece to our eye, so it's a shame only 2,012 units will be produced. Details in the press release after the jump.

[Source: Volkswagen]
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Spirit of the time: Volkswagen Design encounters the tradition of FORTIS Uhren AG

Honoured by awards – three prizes already for the new FORTIS Spaceleader Chronograph by Volkswagen Design

Wolfsburg, 08 April 2010 - In collaboration with the long-established Swiss watchmaker FORTIS, Volkswagen designers have developed a new high-tech chronograph: the FORTIS Spaceleader Chronograph by Volkswagen Design. This automatic chronograph unites visionary ideas of the Volkswagen automotive group with premium precision clockworks of the Swiss FORTIS brand. The result is striking: It has already been distinguished with the "iF product design award," the "red dot design award" and the "GOOD DESIGN Award" by the onset of 2010.

The creative team at Volkswagen was commissioned to prepare a concept for the new Spaceleader by the tradition-rich FORTIS brand. By transferring future automotive-related design forms to the design concept of the chronograph, the very notion of a "wristwatch" was expanded into a new dimension. The result: A micro-mechanic precision clockwork, embedded in black caoutchouc, with a butterfly folding clasp. A mirror-finish polished steel watch casing, as well as sapphire glass with double-sided anti-reflective coating. In brief: The FORTIS Spaceleader by Volkswagen Design.

Three of the most renowned design awards had already been bestowed upon it before the official presentation of the FORTIS Spaceleader. It got the coveted "iF product design award 2010," which has constituted the hallmark of fine design since 1953. Furthermore, it was honoured by the "red dot design award – honourable mention 2010" and the "GOOD DESIGN Award" of the Athenaeum Museum Chicago, the most senior among the three prizes mentioned. This prize was established in 1950 and has been bestowing awards in various categories for excellent design ever since. Thus not only purist watch lovers may crave the limited edition-only 2,012 units will be produced-but those free spirits who think out of the box and individualists will also be thrilled by it.

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