Tested For You: Hitting The Road With The Redesigned TAG Heuer Carrera Sport Chronograph 44mm Collection
What better way to experience this racing-inspired chronograph than to buckle open and hit the open road!
Under the leadership of Frédéric Arnault (read HERE), TAG Heuer has seen shifts throughout their business model. From an updated Connected (HERE) to historically significant re-releases like the Heuer Montreal (HERE), the brand is refocusing on what works and leaving everything else in its rearview mirror.
To celebrate its 160th anniversary, TAG Heuer has updated their Carrera Chronographs with 2020 aesthetics and the latest technology. For a brand always at the forefront of racing timekeepers, the new TAG Heuer Carrera Sport Chronograph 44mm represents a modern refresh of watch that has seen action in almost every known racing series.
Introducing the TAG Heuer Carrera Sport Chronograph 44mm
Available in four distinct models, the new TAG Heuer Carrera Sport Chronograph 44mm is powered by TAG Heuer’s in-house Calibre Heuer 02 chronograph movement (read HERE). With a power reserve of 80 hours, this column-wheel chronograph movement is .35mm thinner than its Heuer 01 predecessor and boasts the latest in watchmaking technology.
Design tweaks such as shorter lugs and modified case finishing make these new Carreras pop in the metal. A slightly domed sapphire crystal seamlessly meshes with color mated (to the dial) ceramic bezel. TAG Heuer has even introduced an "H-Shaped" bracelet, which is thinner and lighter than other modern Carrera chronograph bracelets.
For purposes of our test drive, TAG Heuer provided all four Carrera Sport Chronograph 44mm models. The lineup comprises three stainless steel (with bracelet) models, and one two-tone stainless steel and 18k 5N rose gold (with alligator strap) piece. Each model has a well-executed colorway that feels at home within TAG Heuer’s motorsport collection.
As you can see by our images, the TAG Heuer Carrera Sport Chronograph 44mm looks well suited for motorsports action. Originally designed as a "racecar dashboard for the wrist," these pieces offer enhanced readability and a workhorse movement that can withstand the rigors of the racetrack while looking at home in casual or dress wear.
The stainless steel references (CBN2A1B.BA0643, CBN2A1A.BA0643, and CBN2A10.BA0643) are identical save for their color-matched dial and ceramic tachymeter bezels. Collectors have the option of black, deep blue, and olive green palates. Note the olive green model (ref. CBN2A10.BA0643 ) features a brushed sheet tachymeter bezel. Each of the stainless steel pieces come mated to an "H-Shaped" steel bracelet with folding deployant clasp and double locking push-buttons.
At the top-end of the collection is ref. CBN2A5A.FC6481 which features a stainless steel case with 18k 5N rose gold crown and pushers. Furthermore, the hands and indices are 18k 5N rose gold plated. Completing the look is the black ceramic bezel with is filled with rose-gold-colored lacquer, which is a first for TAG Heuer. This two-tone model represents the high water mark for the collection.
In The Metal
While TAG Heuer’s Heuer 01 and Heuer 02 based chronographs have never been known to be particularly svelte, the Carrera Sport Chronograph 44mm does mark a turning point in the collection. With slimmer proportions throughout, the watches feel less cumbersome than their predecessors.
Particularly notable is the alternating use of polished and fine-brushing throughout the execution. The slimmed-down, sloping lugs make the pieces wearable while maintaining the wrist presence needed for a racing chronograph. Lastly, the polished center link bracelet has smooth edges that help to limit pinching and aggravation during warm weather.
Overall, my time with the Carrera Sport Chronograph 44mm collection was enjoyable. The highlight for me would have to be the dark blue-toned ref. CBN2A1A.BA0643. TAG Heuer stuck to the three primary colors that work in watchmaking (blue, black, and the always exotic green), and collectors will be sure to find a colorway that works for them.
Pricing and Availability
The new TAG Heuer Carrera Sport Chronograph 44mm Calibre Heuer 02 Automatic is priced starting at $5,750 for the stainless steel on bracelet variants, and $6,550 for the two-tone 18k 5N Rose gold on alligator strap piece. The collection is available now from TAG Heuer boutiques, authorized retailers, and TAG Heuer’s website.
(Photography by Pierre Vogel)