Up Close: Tag Heuer Carrera Ring Master- Japan Edition (ref. Cv201v, Cv201x, Cv201y)

Up Close: TAG Heuer Carrera Ring Master- Japan Edition (Ref. CV201V, CV201X, CV201Y)

It always seems as though our friends in Japan get all the cool stuff- the latest sneakers, talking robots, crazy gadgets and Limited edition watches.

TAG Heuer typically release a number of watches each year that are only sold in Japan- such as a series of Carreras to commemorate the great driving roads of the world, and an Aquaracer series to mark the world’s best diving spots.

Up Close: Tag Heuer Carrera Ring Master- Japan Edition (ref. Cv201v, Cv201x, Cv201y)Typically these Japan-only LE series are small variations on standard models, such as a unique dial or color combination.

This year, TAG Heuer Japan has released the Carrera Ring Master, a series of three Carrera Calibre 16 Chronographs with different coloured inner-bezels.

The Original: Heuer Ring Master

Up Close: Tag Heuer Carrera Ring Master- Japan Edition (ref. Cv201v, Cv201x, Cv201y)The Heuer Ring Master was a stop-watch released in 1957 with a series of interchangeable coloured rings, each of which has a different scale. The idea was that each ring is designed for a specific sport, such as athletics and boxing, and therefore showing different increments of time.

The watch you see below belongs to collector Peter Moller and is a beautiful complete set, including rings and a leather carrying pouch.

Up Close: Tag Heuer Carrera Ring Master- Japan Edition (ref. Cv201v, Cv201x, Cv201y)

Alain Prost Carrera- Reference CV201Y

Up Close: Tag Heuer Carrera Ring Master- Japan Edition (ref. Cv201v, Cv201x, Cv201y)Each of the 2011 watches has its colour linked to the helmet of a Formula 1 World Champion associated with TAG Heuer. Red is linked to Alain Prost, although fans will know that Prost’s helmet design that he used for most of his career was mainly blue and white, with only a little splash of red. Prost still races in the occasional series, and the helmet you see above is what he uses today.

Only 350 of the Red watches will be made.

Up Close: Tag Heuer Carrera Ring Master- Japan Edition (ref. Cv201v, Cv201x, Cv201y)With the exception of the coloured inner bezel, the Carrera Ring Master is the same as the standard Calibre 16 Chronograph, including the bracelet and Sapphire Caseback.

While the coloured rings on the original Heuer Ring Master each served a specific purpose, the benefit here are purely one of style.

Jenson Button Carrera- Reference CV201X

Up Close: Tag Heuer Carrera Ring Master- Japan Edition (ref. Cv201v, Cv201x, Cv201y)Next up is the Blue watch linked to Jenson Button, which is a LE of 500 watches

Up Close: Tag Heuer Carrera Ring Master- Japan Edition (ref. Cv201v, Cv201x, Cv201y)Lewis Hamilton Carrera- Reference CV201V

Up Close: Tag Heuer Carrera Ring Master- Japan Edition (ref. Cv201v, Cv201x, Cv201y)And finally, in Gold (but let’s call it Yellow) is the Lewis Hamilton edition, which is also an LE of 500

Up Close: Tag Heuer Carrera Ring Master- Japan Edition (ref. Cv201v, Cv201x, Cv201y)The watch retails for ¥420,000, which is about USD5,500…but not sure what sort of premium this represents over the standard Calibre 16 Chronograph.

So while the changes over the standard model we get internationally are purely cosmetic, I like that TAG Heuer Japan go the effort of making something distinctive each year for their market. Given how ubiquitous many of the volume selling watches are today, the ability to choose something just that little bit different is a nice choice to have.

Want to find out more about the history of the TAG Heuer Carrera? Check out the dedicated Calibre 11 Carrera mini-site to see all ten generations of the Carrera from 1963-2013.

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Photos

Peter Moller

TAG Heuer