Introducing: The TAG Heuer Carrera Chronograph Glassbox
Ask a watch enthusiast to name some iconic chronographs, and the Heuer Carrera will likely be one of them. Together with another iconic chronograph, the Rolex Daytona, it debuted back in 1963. It was actually a young Jack Heuer who came up with the design and the name for this watch. And now, 60 years later, the Carrera is still true to that first model that Heuer designed. These new two contemporary Carrera Chronograph Glassbox models hit the sweet spot with a 39mm diameter. Furthermore, they have a beautiful domed sapphire crystal shaped just like the Plexiglass crystals on the vintage models. Let’s have a closer look.
TAG Heuer Carrera Chronograph Glassbox
The original Heuer Carrera ref. 2447 was a tool watch by birth, intended for race car and rally drivers, for example. However, it was also a very elegant watch, or at least today we’d look at it as such. Putting the tachymeter scale onto the tension ring rather than an external bezel — in contrast to the Speedmaster from 1957 or Daytona from 1963 — was one of Jack Heuer’s design decisions. On the new TAG Heuer Carrera Chronograph Glassbox, you will find the tachymeter on the outside of the curved flange under the crystal. It provides an incredibly nice 3D effect and therefore creates a lot of depth on the dial.
Two dial options for the Carrera Chronograph Glassbox
As you can see in the pictures above, the TAG Heuer Carrera Glassbox comes in two different versions — one with a reverse panda dial and one with a blue dial. But there’s more to it! The reverse panda version (ref. CBS2210.FC6534) has the date window at 12 o’clock, whereas the blue version (ref. CBS2212.FC6535) has it at the more conservative 6 o’clock position. To be clear, both Carrera Chronograph Glassbox watches have the same TH20-00 chronograph movement inside.
The dials on these watches have some more differences, though. On the black dial, you will find that all three silver sub-dials are recessed and have this circular graining effect. On the blue-dial model, the two sub-dials at 9 and 3 o’clock are recessed with circular graining, but the one at 6 o’clock is not. To me, it almost looks like the blue version has a two-register layout, but looking a second glance, there’s the third small hand ticking away the seconds.
The date at 12 o’clock on the reverse panda might look awkward at first, but Carrera enthusiasts and collectors will recognize it from the 12 Dato model that Heuer had in its catalog in the 1960s.
The stainless steel case measures 39mm in diameter, and for now, there’s no word on the thickness or lug-to-lug. You can see that the finishing of the Carrera Glassbox case is nicely done, consisting of brushed sides and a polished top surface. The crown has the TAG Heuer logo, and the pump pushers have polished sides and circular-brushed tops. TAG Heuer’s Carrera Chronograph Glassbox is also water resistant to 10 ATM (~100 meters).
Inside both versions of the Carrera Chronograph Glassbox is TAG Heuer’s new TH20-00 movement. This caliber, an evolution of the Heuer 02, can be seen as the brand’s next-generation movement, featuring a bidirectional winding system, 80-hour power reserve, and nicer decorative elements. The TH20-00 joins the TAG Heuer family of TH30-00 and TH50-00 calibers. It’s TAG Heuer’s Movements Director Carole Forestier (previously Cartier’s Head of Fine Watchmaking) that leads the development of this new generation of movements.
Price and availability
Both watches come on calfskin straps with a TAG Heuer-signed folding buckle. The blue Carrera Chronograph Glassbox comes on a standard smooth strap, while the reverse panda comes on a perforated black rally strap. The blue edition (ref. CBS2212.FC6535) will be available as of May 2023, and the reverse panda version (ref. CBS2210.FC6534) will be available a bit sooner in April 2023. Finally, the price tag for each will be CHF 6,300.
In my opinion, the new TAG Heuer Carrera Chronograph Glassbox is a nice modern interpretation of the classic chronograph designed by Jack Heuer. The curved flange and the sapphire “glassbox” crystal look beautiful, and I can’t wait to try this one on the wrist. From the 2023 TAG Heuer 2023, this Carrera Chronograph Glassbox with the reverse panda dial is my favorite.
Besides these two versions with the TH20-00 movement, there will also be a TAG Heuer Carrera Chronograph Tourbillon Glassbox edition. That model has a 42mm diameter and houses the TAG Heuer’s TH20-09 tourbillon movement. We will cover this watch in a separate article.
For now, let us know what you think of the new TAG Heuer Carrera Chronograph Glassbox in the comments below. And to find out more information, visit the official TAG Heuer website.