A few months ago, TAG Heuer presented a brand new in-house calibre called 1969. It was clear that Baselworld would be the place for TAG Heuer to present a new watch that with that movement. And they did come with a very nice one, the Carrera CH80, a retro-style Carrera inspired by the very firsts 1960’s versions. What we didn’t expect, was that the CH80 presented in Basel wasn’t actually the final design and that some, small but significant, changes were planned. For that reason, we teamed up with our friend David from Calibre 11, the famous online Tag Heuer magazine, to introduce you the ‘real’ Carrera CH80.
The first question that you might ask is why Calibre CH80 and not Calibre 1969? Officially, TAG Heuer did some (minor) changes on the calibre between its presentation and its official release in Baselworld. As 1969 was supposed to be a codename for the development of the new calibre, CH80 refers to the 80 hours of power reserve (initially 70 hours in the 1969). The other reason that we can guess is based on a group strategy, as the CH80 will certainly be delivered to the other brands of the LVMH Group (Chaumet, Zenith, Hublot or Bulgari) and ‘1969’ refers too much to the history of TAG Heuer. Anyway, the new CH80 is a modern movement, built as an integrated chronograph with column wheel and vertical clutch, with a classical 3-6-9 sub-dial layout.
The Carrera presented at Baselworld 2014 is a tribute to the old Carreras from the 1960’s and especially the ref. 2447. The dial is offered in two versions, a black face with white sub-dials and a white face with black sub-dials – both a re-issue of the famous ‘panda’ dials. The Carrera CH80 also follows the trend of downsizing that we’ve noticed this year at Baselworld, as the case, with this typically Carrera design, measures a reasonable 41mm. This “prototype” features a pulsometric scale around the dial and some various red details on the crown, sub-dials hands and logo. And this is exactly what is (most likely) going to be changed.
David – our favourite TAG Heuer’s insider – reported to us that based on ‘behind the scenes’ news, some deductions and wishes, several changes that will be made, before the Carrera CH80 hits the shelves:
• A tachymeter scale around the dial instead of a pulsometric scale
• No red accents on the crown, logo and sub-dials hands
• A different design of the sub-dials, with a complete “azurage” and a deeper design
The CH80 is clearly simpler and more mature like this, without the red accents and with a vintage tachymeter ring, respectful to the old ref. 2447. And because blue is the new black and a major trend at Baselworld 2014 (as at Baselworld 2013), we’ve imagined a ‘Steve McQueen’ blue version as well.
Check out more information at David’s new website Time + Tide.