The TAG Heuer Carrera is perhaps the quintessential racing watch. After all, it takes its inspiration from one of most daring races in history, the legendary Carrera Panamericana, famed for its challenging, and often dangerous, course. In 1962 it caught the imagination of motorsport enthusiast Jack Heuer, who harnessed his watchmaking company’s expertise in precision timekeeping to release a revolutionary chronograph bearing the race’s name the following year. It remains his proudest creation and it’s easy to see why, with its timeless design as refreshing today as it was more than half a century ago.
As TAG Heuer celebrates its 160th anniversary, it has revisited this timepiece in two handsome new collections that each channel the pioneering spirit of the original. The TAG Heuer Carrera Chronograph 42mm offers a contemporary take on the famous silver-dialled first model from 1963, presented without a tachymeter scale to retain a clean, pared-back look.
The elegant dial features two chronograph subdials at 3 and 9 o’clock, operated via the two push buttons that have been carefully integrated into the silhouette of the stainless-steel case. These versatile watches come with opaline black or sunray-brushed blue dials on a chic stainless-steel bracelet, composed of H-shaped links carefully angled to ensure optimal comfort and fit. Meanwhile a dressier bicoloured timepiece with silver dial and rose-gold plated hands, along with a version with a deep anthracite dial, are paired with a brown alligator strap, offering a vintage touch.
Similarly, the new TAG Heuer Carrera Sport Chronograph brings a contemporary and polished take on this iconic model, with a slightly sportier aesthetic and larger 44mm case size. The attention to detail comes through in carefully considered design tweaks, including shorter lugs to improve comfort, meanwhile the alternating polished and fine-brushed finishes on the case lend it a sleeker and more svelte feel. This is enhanced further still by the new, thinner H-shaped bracelet.
Special attention has been paid to the symmetry of the dial, balancing three highly legible subdials with the addition of a date indication at 6 o’clock. Along with black, green and blue-dialled options, the collection includes a particularly eye-catching and luxurious piece featuring a black ceramic bezel filled with rose-gold lacquer, a first for the brand, with matching crown and push buttons crafted from solid 18ct rose gold.
All these timepieces come equipped with the watchmaker’s powerful and precise Calibre Heuer 02, an innovative in-house movement developed and produced in TAG Heuer’s Chevenez manufacture. This piece of precision watchmaking comprises 168 components, including a column wheel and vertical clutch, the foundations of a reliable chronograph, as well as offering an impressive power reserve of 80 hours.
TAG Heuer Carrera Chronograph, £4,395 to £4,550, TAG Heuer Carrera Sport Chronograph, £4,695 to £5,395, tagheuer.com