It was in the year 1963 that TAG Heuer came up with the Carrera collection of watches for the very first time. It was aimed at the professional race car drivers who scorch the tracks at extremely high speeds, and their ardent fans who cheered them on all throughout the turbulent roads and turns that faced them until they saw the coveted checkered flags at the finishing point. This year, they are celebrating the 50th birthday of the collection.
The TAG Heuer Carrera Carbon Calibre 1887 Concept Chronograph is the special edition watch created to commemorate this proud occasion. But, the watchmaker did not base this watch on the original 1963 model. It is based on the TAG Heuer Carrera Mikrogrider which was launched in 2012. If you recollect properly, this watch was selected for the coveted Swiss Watch of the Year prize at last year’s Geneva Watchmaking Grand Prix held in November 2012. TAG Heuer was bestowed with the Aiguille d’Or, the Oscar equivalent of horology for this watch creation. What was so unique about this watch? The carbon matrix composite used for creating the watch and the first in house created movement are the unique features of the watch. Now, the well-known luxury watchmaker is incorporating some of the features of this Carrera Mikrogrider in to the Carrera Carbon Calibre 1887 Concept Chronograph.
If you are familiar with the Carrera 1887 Jack Heuer Edition watch, then you will be familiar with the Carbon Concept watch. Both of these watches have many similar features incorporated in to them. One of the key differences is in the use of titanium carbide steel for the creation of the 45 mm case of the Jack Heuer version. In the Carbon Concept version, it is incorporating a much lighter material.
The composite material used for the creation of the Carbon Concept watch case is made of an isotropic matrix of extremely thin carbon fibers that are as thin as .007 mm in size. The matrix case is given its form before the carbon fibers are rigidified through a chemical process in to its solid form. This technology is not something created by TAG Heuer for the first time. It is already in use in aeronautics as well as Formula 1 car racing. Thus, the resultant watch will be as light as a feather while being durable like a race car. All these carbon parts of the watch together add up to only 19 grams in weight!
Caliber 1887, the very first in house movement created by the legendary watchmaker in the year 2011, is the powerhouse running the operations of this watch. It has 320 individual parts working together to achieve a common goal. Why did they name it the ‘1887’? It was in this year that Edouard Heuer came out with the very first oscillating pinion. They gave this year as the name of the caliber so as to honor the memories of this pioneer watchmaker.