An exciting partnership was struck in 2021, uniting two powerhouses obsessed with harnessing speed. The alliance between TAG Heuer and Porsche was so natural that many wondered why it had taken so long for two iconic brands sharing products with the name ‘Carrera’ to join forces. The latest model to hit the tracks is the TAG Heuer Carrera Chronosprint x Porsche, a dashing speedster in steel or gold celebrating the 60th anniversary of the Carrera and the Porsche 911. And there’s something quite special regarding the display, with a non-linear seconds hand that mimics the acceleration of the original 1963 Porsche 911.
The story of how Jack Heuer came up with the name of his Carrera in honour of the Carrera Panamericana is ingrained in watchmaking folklore. F.A. Porsche’s 911 shares an equally legendary trajectory and could have earned its name from a remarkable achievement: reaching 0-100 km/h in just 9.1 seconds. The reality is a bit less captivating, as Porsche had to rename its 901 model due to a trademark issue with Peugeot, the owner of all car names with 3 digits and a zero in the middle. Even more fortunate for the partnership is that both these icons were introduced in 1963.
Earlier this year, TAG Heuer released a celebratory 60th-anniversary Carrera Glassbox with a pronounced domed sapphire crystal over the dial, a throwback to early Carrera models fitted with acrylic crystals, earning it the nickname Glassbox.
The new Chronosprint x Porsche shares a similar case and relies on the same base movement as the Glassbox but comes in a slightly larger 42mm diameter case with a thickness of 14.9mm. Available in stainless steel and rose gold, the piston pushers and faceted lugs are typical Carrera style; the 100m water-resistant case displays brushed flanks and polished top surfaces. With practically no bezel to speak of, the pronounced domed sapphire crystal really stands out.
The red lines on the flange of the Chronosprint x Porsche visually represent the 0-100 km/h acceleration in 9.1 seconds of the first Porsche 911. With its finely sandblasted surface, the raised and rounded tachymetre scale is inscribed with Porsche between markers 35 and 60 and Chronosprint at 15. Other references to the German car brand can be found on the red stripy area between 50 and 55 on the running seconds at 6 o’clock, an allusion to 1970s Porsche dashboards that highlighted the 50 km/h speed limit in urban areas. The 12-hour totaliser at 9 o’clock also has a red highlighted area starting at 6.8 to warn drivers of the 6,800 revolutions per minute limit. All three counters rely on red hands like those found on the 911’s dashboard, and the two chronograph counters at 9 and 3 o’clock are snailed. Luckily, the date window that appears at noon on the Glassbox Chronograph has been relocated to a less conspicuous location inside the running seconds at 6 o’clock.
But there’s something special about the Carrera Chronosprint x Porsche. Its central chronograph hand doesn’t rotate around the dial in a linear motion but instead relies on a motion that is designed for precise measurements of short time intervals. Its central hand accelerates swiftly on the first part of the dial that is graduated from 0 to 10, then gradually decelerates over 60 seconds and quickly restarts. The chosen design ensures clear legibility of the dial, and it’s also a real treat for car lovers.
This specific motion is achieved thanks to modifications over the base calibre TH20, which is used in the Carrera Glassbox. The unique mechanism features two snail-shaped wheels, creating a captivating decelerating motion for the central hand. These wheels are crafted using the LiGA process. The rest of the new calibre TH20-08 is identical to the standard version. This automatic chronograph movement is an evolution of TAG’s Heuer 02. Equipped with a column wheel and vertical clutch, the movement beats at 28,800vph and delivers a robust power reserve of 80 hours. Its rotor is shaped like the three-spoke steering wheel of a Porsche.
Available with a shimmering (matte, finely sandblasted) silver dial on the steel model and a shimmering beige dial on the rose gold, the indices are applied and have a touch of white Super-LumiNova matching that of the hour and minute hands.
The calfskin strap accompanying the watch – black for steel, brown for rose gold – features a 911 embossed logo. The steel model has a folding clasp with push buttons, while the rose gold has a more elegant gold pin buckle.
Available this month, the steel TAG Heuer Carrera Chronosprint x Porsche retails for CHF 9,000, and the rose gold version for CHF 23,000. For more information, please visit tagheuer.com.