OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Introducing the TAG Heuer Carrera Drive Timer Calibre 5

Here’s your early look at the first of TAG Heuer’s 2014 Baselworld collection- the Carrera Drive Timer Calibre 5. Yes, the new model is yet another Carrera, but the look is unlike other Carreras. The Drive Timer gives us a hint about what to expect for Basel 2014- and while the Carrera will feature prominently in the new collection, chronographs will not.

We’ve been telling you for a while that 2014 will be the year that TAG Heuer pushes hard with its 3-hand watch range. Yes, there is the Carrera Calibre 1969, but putting the new movement to one side, most of what you’ll see from TAG Heuer in six-weeks time will be non- chrono. models.

Why? The simple answer is the Chinese market, where TAG Heuer are pushing to take a similar market share as it enjoys in other major markets. And while one has to be careful about generalising too much about a market as large and diverse as China, it is true that 3-hand watches continue to be preferred to chronographs.

Carrera Drive Timer WAR2A80- Titanium Carbide

WAR2A80.FC6337There are two models in the Carrera Drive Timer range, the first being the Titanium Carbide version- WAR2A80.

The watch has a 43mm case and features two crowns- the traditional crown at 3 o’clock and a second crown at 10 o’clock that is used to rotate the internal 60-minute bezel. Again I’m reminded of the words of our Carrera expert Mark Moss: a Carrera should not have an external bezel. Rotating the bezel until the Red triangle sits level with the minute hand means that you now have a 60-minute timer while you blast down a mountain pass in your vintage Carrera RS, or battle the traffic to the shops in your Corolla.

The dial is unusual for a Carrera- large numerals set out each hour. Likewise, the hand-set used on the Drive Timer is unique to this watch and unlike the usual Carrera design.

Carrera Drive Timer WAR2A10

WAR2A10The second model- WAR2A10- is the same watch as above, but with a stainless steel case that alternates brushed and polished finishes. We haven’t seen the new Drive Timers in person, but based on the photos, this is the model we like most.

Both watches are available only on a black calf-skin rally style strap. If you have a Carrera Jack Heuer 80th Birthday, then the strap will look very familiar.

Movement- Calibre 5

TAG-Heuer-Calibre-5-MovementWe exclusively told you last June that TAG Heuer was planning on developing its own in-house 3-hand watch movement, but until that project is further developed, the Calibre 5 will continue to be the primary watch movement offered.

While the Calibre 5 (as seen in the Aquaracer 500m) used to be the ETA 2824-2, the majority of Calibre 5 models today have the Sellita SW200- essentially the same movement, but one not supplied by Swatch Group.

Live Photos

IMG_2968

Price and Availability

While TAG Heuer has not yet dropped the full details of the new Carrera, we understand that prices range from EUR2500- 3000, depending on your market and model.

Both versions of the watch will only be available from TAG Heuer boutiques- this one won’t be on general release.

***

  • Pat Parle

    Really nice looking watch, I like you, prefer the stainless steel version!

    • Jessica

      Yes Pat, agree its really a nice looking watch..

  • Yes, the all-black look works well on some watches, but generally I'd rather have the contrast of black leather and stainless steel. Can't wait to see these in person.

    dc

  • abrod

    If they can combine the aesthetics of this watch with the Cal. 1969 chronograph I'd likely purchase one.

  • Mark

    I like it! I’ll go against current consensus and say I prefer the titanium carbide one – the steel one looks a bit too shiny, though it may just be the photo.

    If it doesn’t wear too big, I may even pick one up as a daily wearer.

  • Robert

    I’d die for a Carrera Drive Time with a day-date 7750 inside! Not wih the large minute digits dial but with a normal Carrera dial, maybe relativeley large lume areas at the hout markings and on the hands.

    • Robert

      Sorry, misprint: of course I meant hour markings.
      The ones on the above watches were just fine on the day-date chrono too, just as the hands…

  • DM.

    Not entirely sold on this one.
    I do like how they've updated the regular Calibre 5 Carrera though.

    I used to find the dial too empty as it were and a touch on the flat/dull side. Now that they've changed the hour makers, giving them more body/volume and something more interesting to look at (i.e the wedge shape), they seem to do a better job of filling the dial.

    As usual, the anthracite dial with the sunburst looks like an instant winner.

  • Scotti b

    Great article. It’s the titanium carbide one for me. Great looking watch. Looking Foward to seeing this here in the UK.

  • Robert

    Sorry for chiming in again but this new dial design together with the long avaited turning bezel makes my phantasy run…
    So: I'd love the chronograph Valjoux 7750 /Sellita SW500 version of the very same dial/hand/bezel design with day-date at 9, 41 mm case (43 mm for some others…), bezel turning crown unitted with the chrono reset buttton at 4, steel bracelet availabilty, WR 100 m, all-black and all-blue dial availability. An unbeatable combo.

  • Robert

    I might have found the original of this Heuer Carrera dial design on OnTheDash! Here it goes:
    http://www.onthedash.com/Guide/_Chronographs/63.C

    (If this link is not allowed, Mod plz feel free o remove it!
    Robert

  • RBM

    Personally I don´t like the new Drive Timer, just like the whole 2014 Calibre 5 models.

    In my opinion, the Drive Timer has nothing to do with the Carrera design.

    The older Calibre 5 models were perfectly shaped and designed, but the newer series, shown on the TH homepage are just embarrassing in my opinion.

    Just take a look on the new (Grand Carrera styled) bracelet. Horrific!

    A real shame in my opinion. =(

  • RBM

    BUT:

    The new Twin Time looks great!!!

  • An interesting reaction to the new Drive Timer- seems like it will be one of those watches that you either love or hate.

    These will be on very limited distribution- believe that its boutique-only.

    This is probably my favourite of the 2014 Carrera range- just ahead of the Twin-Time Carrera…which we'll be showing you very shortly…

    dc

  • TAG Heuer Carrera Drive Timer Calibre 5 is really great watch, with perfect shape and design..

    diamond rolex

  • Robert

    That very narrow turning underglass bezel is such a great invention! Does not detract from the elegance at all while a very usable addition. Chronograph version should have the bezel crown at 4 , common with the reset pusher.

    • Agree. As far as I know, there is no Chrono version planned…at least not this year

      dc

      • Robert

        Maybe next year… I think it depends on the success of the cal. 5 – and that success is programmed for sure.

  • Darryn

    Hi there, absolutely loving the drive timer. Heading to Hong Kong in two weeks and have a feeling one might be coming home with me. David, do you know what the case back is. Is it a clear case back. Can't seem to find any photo of it, not even on the Tag website. Thanks.

    • Hi Darryn- yes, both models have a sapphire caseback

      dc

  • Nixon

    The "Titanium Carbide" in this blog is actually a Titanium Case Watch. Titanium Grade 2 Case–not just a Titanium Carbide Coating. WAR2A80

  • Robert

    I’d be happy with a day-date ETA-7750-driven (caliber 16) Carrera Drive Timer in a good size case (I’d call it 40-41 mm) and steel bracelet. Important is the bezel turning mechanism placed to 4 o’clock via double-function reset pusher. Would make a fantastic watch!!!

  • Daaku

    Are the indices applied or simply painted on the dial? One of my major peeves for any watch costing $1k+. I like Ball 3-handers better since they tend to use applied chrome indices instead of simply painting over the dial.

    But other than that, great design. After collecting chronos (v7750) most of my life, I’ve now made a switch and prefer good ole 3 handers with day/date. My Tissot Visodate remains my most worn watch out of my small collection.

    Simplicity sometimes rules.

    • calibre11

      Yes, it’s printed dial on this model. Its not the case that cheap watches have printed dials while more expensive watches have applied logos and numerals..most Patek’s have a printed dial! It’s just a different look.

      dc

  • Владислав Никитенко

    отличные часы!!!!! заказал себе такие, жду…..

  • Róbert Timár

    I wonder if we will see a similar (turning bezel) design Drive Timer with a day-date version Caliber 16 chronograph? Turning crown should be the reset pusher of the chronograph – we’ve already seen these double-function pushers earlier on a few watches, e. g. IWC Aquatimer ref. 3719, a Maurice Lacroix and others. I would LOVE! to buy such a chronograph… a 100 m waterresistance and similarly good daytime and nighttime visibility like the 2014 Caliber 5 model would be fine.