Review: Carrera Day Date Calibre 16
Since its release back in 2008, the Carrera Day-Date Calibre 16 has become one of the most popular watches in the TAG Heuer range: bigger, bolder and more intricately designed than most of the Carrera models, the Day-Date model is the Alpha Male of the Carrera pack.
Both watches use the over-size 43mm case- 2mm larger than the standard Carrera and a massive 20% larger than the 36mm Carrera re-edition from 1996. As well as having a larger case, both watches place the minute and seconds hash-marks on an angled inner-bezel, freeing up more room on the dial for the signature applied minute markers, set out in 5-minute increments. Look carefully and you’ll see that both watches also use the same small triangles on the inner bezel to mark each 5-minute increment.
The other design flourish borrowed from the Carrera 360 is the double-crown, a look that the Carrera 360 passed on to other watches in the TAG Heuer range, including the Grand Carrera and Monaco V4.
The Day-Date is cut from the same cloth as watches like the Grand Carrera Calibre 36- the “more is more” approach.
Even simple features like the crown and the top Chronograph pusher have detailed finishes, with a black and red band respectively. The date window? An angled 3D window that increases the sense of depth.
Like other Carrera Chronograph models, the 12 and 6 o’clock sub-dials have a circular “Record” finish, while the 9 o’clock register is slightly recessed. The central chrono. hand and the 30-minute sub-dial hands have red tips, adding another splash of color to the dial.
Overall the design of the watch works very well- the additional detailed touches and applied markers give the watch a more 3D, premium look. The question for people looking to buy a Carrera will be whether they like this design, or prefer the more understated Date-only Chronograph.
I can see that some will find the watch “over-designed”- and there is no disputing that it’s a “busy” design, but it does have a place in the Carrera range. If you have the “elegant” 1887, the “vintage-styled” Heritage series and the “racing-style” Calibre 16 Chronograph, the Day-Date is a bolder, more modern design.