TAG Heuer continues the race that never stops with their latest release, the TAG Heuer Carrera Chronosprint x Porsche in two thrilling steel and gold versions and honours the 60th anniversaries of two legends: the TAG Heuer Carrera and the Porsche 911.
With both TAG Heuer and the Porsche 911 celebrating a major milestone year, it’s no surprise that the two brands would team up yet again for a collaboration with the famed TAG Heuer Carrera and bring out a piece that pays tribute to both the watch and the car, who both take their name from the iconic Carrera Panamericana race. Last night, TAG Heuer launched their latest in the Carrera line up, the Chronosprint x Porsche in two variants, a steel version and rose gold version.
We were lucky enough to go hands on with the watch a couple of days prior to it’s launch, giving us a great feel for the steel variant. Whilst this isn’t a hands on review, it’s always easier to talk about a new watch release when you’ve held it in your hands and had the chance to wear it briefly and play around with the watch. Whilst this on the surface looks like the Carrera Glassbox, there’s quite a few subtle and not so subtle differences with this piece. More on that shortly.
The design of the watch is typical TAG Heuer Carrera. TAG Heuer says “it’s captivating visual references to the Porsche dashboards of the 1970s add a dynamic edge to this speed-driven timepiece. The result is a passionate aesthetic homage to a racing legend.” Can’t argue with this here. Our first impressions are it’s a good looking sporty and elegant piece.
TAG Heuer have given the new Chronosprint x Porsche a 42mm case, measuring 14.9mm thick, 3mm larger in diameter and 1mm thicker than the Glassbox. Whilst some may say this is too big, the design of the case and dial makes this wear slightly smaller on the wrist, and combined with the black leather strap, almost seemed the right size on my 17cm wrist.
Design wise, you get the standard sub-dial layout with the date window at 6 o’clock. TAG Heuer have taken aesthetic cues from the Porsche 911 here, with small but clever elements, like the 6 o’clock subdial which features a reference to the iconic dashboard of the 1970s Porsche, where the area around 50 km/h was often highlighted to indicate the recommended speed in urban areas.
On the 9 o’clock subdial, TAG Heuer have placed a red section on the dial, and it serves as a reminder of the critical engine limit beyond which damage may occur. The red line starts at 6.8 hours and refers to the limit of 6800 revolution per minute, the point at which the 911 engine redlines. TAG Heuer have even gone one step further, drawing inspiration from the shape of a car dashboard to design the hands of the watch.
In another nod to the original Porsche 911 (Initially called the 901 after the time it took it to go from 0-100km/h: 9.1 seconds) is the ingenious chronograph timer. You’ll notice the second markers around the outer track of the dial are not spaced evenly, and there is a red section from 0-9.1 seconds. This is due to the way TAG Heuer have designed the chronograph in order to represent the 9.1 second 0-100 time of the Porsche 911.
On starting the chronograph, the hand races to the 4 o’clock position in just 9.1 seconds (normally it would take 20 seconds) and then gradually slows down as the hand approaches the 60 seconds mark. At the 9 o’clock position, where it would normally take 45 seconds to reach, the time has only elapsed by 31 seconds. The other 29 seconds of timing is done in the last quarter of the scale, slowing down dramatically before it speeds back up again. It’s hard to imagine, so check out the video below and watch it in action!
In another deigned first, the TAG Heuer Carrera Chronosprint x Porsche takes innovation to new heights with its double glassbox. This innovative design, offers an easy reading of the indications on the dial via the front glass and a captivating view of the watch’s intricate mechanics through the caseback glass.
The caseback features a specially crafted oscillating rotor designed to replicate the iconic three-spoke steering wheel of Porsche. Under this is the newly developed TH20-08 automatic chronograph with 80 hour power reserve and vibrating at 4Hz or 28,8000 vph. It’s an easy to operate chronograph and the pump pushers help with the fluid operation of the piece.
TAG Heuer are capitalising on the 60th Anniversary of the Carrera, and with it being the 60th Anniversary of the Porsche 911 as well, the new collaboration piece is timely and honestly a good piece. Whilst the 39mm Carrera Glassbox was a success and more so among watch enthusiasts, this new Carrera is sure to appeal to a wide audience with a larger 42mm size, but not wearing too large. If you read our interview with TAG Heuer’s Global Heritage Director, Nicholas Biebuyck, this will make sense given his comments around the sizes the average buyer of a TAG Heuer is looking for.
Wearing this piece and testing it out, it’s a good looking piece that sits well on the wrist and will work in a variety of situations. The Glassbox style works incredibly well for the Chronosprint, and the unique chronograph timing function whilst not having any real world application, is cool and a great way to pay homage to the Porsche 911, not to mentioned showcasing what TAG Heuer’s movement team can do in that innovation space. And for those wanting a more dressier version then the rose gold model will tick a lot of boxes.
Reference: CBS2011.FC6529 (Steel) / CBS2040.FC8318 (Rose Gold)
- Case: 42mm / 48.6 mm lug to lug
- Thickness: 14.9mm thick (including crystal front and back)
- Case Material: Steel brushed and polished case / 18k 5N Rose Gold
- Case back: Steel screw-down or 18K 5N rose gold screw-down both with glassbox sapphire caseback
- Dial: Silver shimmery dial (Steel) / Beige shimmery dial (Rose Gold)
- Crystal: Glassbox domed sapphire crystal with double anti-reflective treatment
- Water resistance:100m / 10bar
- Movement: In-house Calibre TH20-08 Automatic. 28,800 vph (4hz) pivoting on 33 Jewels
- Power reserve: 80 Hours
- Strap: Black (Steel) or Brown (Gold) calfskin leather strap with “911” logo embossed. Fine brushed, polished Steel or 18K 5N rose gold plated pin buckle with TAG Heuer shield