First Look: 2018 Carrera Heuer-02 43mm

TAG Heuer continues to unveil elements of its 2018 collection with the launch of the Carrera Heuer-02. We’ve expected to see TAG Heuer’s flagship chronograph movement expand beyond the Autavia and tourbillon models, and given the focus on this year being the 55th anniversary of the Carrera, it shouldn’t surprise to the in-house Calibre appear in TAG Heuer’s key model.

2018 TAG Heuer Carrera Heuer-02 Rose Gold Ref. CBG2051

The new range appears a few weeks ahead of Baselworld 2018, where the majority of the year’s collection will be launched.

What’s New

2018 TAG Heuer Carrera Heuer-02 Carbon Fibre Ref. CBG2016

The Carrera Heuer-02 uses the same skeleton dial design introduced in the original 45mm Carrera Heuer-01 back in 2015. Last year those themes were extended to a 43mm Carrera Heuer-01 Skeleton range, which the new model effectively replaces. As you can see in the image below, with the exception of the revised dial layout required by the change in movement (moving to a more classic 3-6-9), the two watches are very similar.

The change that we would have made would have been to use the same silver outer-ring and red sub-dial hand on the 6 o’clock register as used on the other two registers, as a means of emphasising the changes.

Calibre Heuer-02

We’ve followed the story of the Calibre Heuer-02 since we broke the news of the new movement back in March 2012. Developed as the Calibre 1888, launched as the Calibre 1969 before being re-launched as the Calibre CH-80, the movement finally was launched as a mainstream production movement when it powered last year’s Heuer Autavia Heuer-02.

The TAG Heuer designed and built movement now offers a 75-hour power reserve (slightly down on the 80 hours of the CH-80) and has gained a good reputation in the Autavia. But as much as we love the Autavia, the move to add the Heuer-02 to the Carrera range is the mainstream début of the movement, given the far larger production numbers of the Carrera.

There are no changes from the movement as used in the Autavia- with the same red column wheel and rotor decoration.

The Range

While the 45mm Carrera Heuer-01 features a titanium centre case, the majority of the 43mm skeleton range features a steel case and steel lugs. And as we now see on the Connected range, TAG Heuer’s modular approach to case construction allows lugs and bezels made from different materials to offer a broad range of options.

Carrera Ref. CBG2010- Steel

The steel black dial Carrera is available with three strap options- the tan leather above, a stainless steel bracelet or a rubber strap.

Carrera Ref. CBG2011- Steel

Like the black dial model, you can also choose between options for the blue dial watch.

Carrera CBG2051- Pink Gold

The Rose Gold (or Pink Gold as TAG Heuer now calls this model) Carrera has a titanium-carbide coated steel centre case, but with 18K 5N Pink Gold lugs and bezel.

Carrera CBG2050- Pink Gold/ Ceramic Bezel

Carrera CBG2016- Carbon Fibre

The carbon fibre option features the same steel centre case as the Rose Gold model, but this time with carbon fibre lugs and a black ceramic bezel.

Carrera CBG2090- Matte Ceramic

The final model differs from the rest of the range in that it swaps out the steel centre case for a case made (or at least predominately made) from matte Ceramic. This model comes with a full matte ceramic bracelet as well as the option of a rubber strap.

What Comes Next?

Don’t think that this is full the extent of the Heuer-02 rollout across the Carrera range- there’s more to come.

Firstly, there will be a 45mm Carrera Heuer-02 GMT to be released shortly, reference CBG2A1Z. This will be the first Carrera Chronograph GMT and the second complication built on the Heuer-02 base, following the tourbillon.

But what collectors really want to know is whether there will be a heritage-style Carrera Heuer-02. CEO Jean-Claude Biver had the following to say at the launch of the new skeleton-dial model:

When it came to designing the new TAG Heuer Carrera, we were faced with a choice between a vintage inspired piece and a modern reworking. We opted for the latter. At TAG Heuer, all of our energy goes into designing the watches of the future. We innovate by anticipating the desires of tomorrow’s consumers.

Despite this, we do expect that it’s only a matter of time before we get a replacement for the stillborn Carrera CH80 and hope that along with the new Grand Carrera range, it forms part of TAG Heuer’s Baselworld launches.

Price and Availability- 2018 TAG Heuer Carrera Heuer-02

The 2018 Carrera Heuer-02 is on sale now, with watches on their way to the dealers and already listed on US prices for the range is as follows:

  • CBG2010: $5,400
  • CBG2011: $5,500
  • CBG2051: $12,500
  • CBG2050: $9,250
  • CBG2090: $6,550

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