TAG Heuer Carrera McLaren 1974 Edition

This weekend is one of the most special dates on the global motoring calendar- the Goodwood Festival of Speed. Taking place at Lord March’s Goodwood estate near Chichester, West Sussex, the event has usurped traditional events like motor shows to become the place for car markers to show off their latest efforts. And it’s not just the car companies who are there- many of the Formula 1 teams and drivers come along to show off current and historic racing cars.

goodwood-festival-of-speed-mclarenTAG Heuer began sponsoring the event in 2011, and just a few weeks ago signed a fresh agreement for the next three years as the Official Timing Partner of the Festival of Speed. And this is good news for watch fans, because traditionally, sponsorships like this result in new watches..

TAG Heuer Carrera McLaren 1974 Edition

McLaren FittipaldiIn 1974, Brazilian Emerson Fittipaldi won the first of his two World Championships for McLaren. The team was founded in 1963 and made its Grand Prix debut a few years later in 1966. While the team would win several races in those early years with drivers Bruce McLaren and fellow Kiwi Denny Hulme, true success for the team proved elusive until the 1970s, after Bruce’s death.

Led by Teddy Mayer, the team hired young Brazilian Emerson Fittipaldi for the 1974 season whose World Championship win was the first for the team. Given the 40th anniversary of this milestone, it’s not surprising that the new TAG Heuer watch for the 2014 Festival of Speed pays homage to this anniversary.

Reference CAR2A12

CAR2A12.FT6033 TAG HEUER CARRERA 1887The TAG Heuer Carrera CH1887 McLaren 40th Anniversary Edition  is based on the 43mm Carrera 1887 Ceramic Bezel (below), but with a few bespoke features.

TAG Heuer Carrera 1887 Ceramic 43mmLet’s start with the dial, which is Silver opaline (White)- a colour not available on the standard 43mm 1887. Providing contrast are the two Black sub-dials at 12 and 6 o’clock which lose the Silver border of the standard model. The usual Red detailing on the hands, chronograph pusher and “Automatic” text are replaced by McLaren’s traditional Orange.

TAG Heuer McLaren Carrera 1887One of the most effective elements of the dial are the Black-Gold finishes applied to the hands and double-numerals. It gives the watch a much sportier look that the standard model, and to our eyes looks great. The TAG Heuer logo is printed, rather than featuring an applied logo.

And finally, the text “McLaren 1974 Edition” features on the Ceramic bezel.



TAG_Heuer_CALIBRE_1887The Carrera McLaren 1974 Edition uses the TAG Heuer made movement the CH1887, which is the new name for the movement that used to be called the Calibre 1887.

Following the news a few weeks ago that the Calibre CH80 was on indefinite hold, the CH1887 is TAG Heuer’s sole production Chronograph movement.

Price and Availability

While details have yet to be confirmed, we understand that the McLaren Carrera will be a Limited Edition, perhaps only available in the UK. No news yet on how many watches will be made, but we’d think that 1,974 has a nice ring to it…but with that number it would have to be a globally available model.

Expect pricing in the UK around GBP4,500, with the first watches available around September.

The History of TAG Heuer and McLaren

McLaren watches

If you’re new to Calibre 11, then make sure you check out this article that gives an overview of both the history of the relationship between McLaren and TAG Heuer, as well as taking a look at the watches TAG Heuer have made to commemorate the partnership. While Fittipaldi’s McLaren did feature Heuer sponsorship, both brands consider the true partnership to have started in 1985 when Techniques d’Avant Garde (TAG) owned both TAG Heuer and 50% of what was then known as McLaren International.

Shown above are three of the most recent collaborations- the Carrera MP4-12C launched alongside the road car of the same name, last year’s Carrera 1887 that marked 50 years of McLaren and then this years 40th Anniversary CH1887.

TAG Heuer Drivers’ Club

TAG-Heuer-Drivers-Club-PassAnother feature of TAG Heuer’s sponsorship of the FOS is the production of 1,500 Drivers’ Club Passes, designed by TAG Heuer designer Christoph Behling.

The design is a combination of a traditional 1/10th second Heuer Stopwatch and the double-numerals from the Carrera McLaren Edition.


  • abrod

    Snooze. Another minor color change on an existing watch – and still I do not appreciate the external bezel on Carreras

  • Jorge

    2011 version was a better effort. TAG seems a bit lost these days.

    • Tagheuer1860

      This 40th Anniversary Limited Edition is the best looking watch for contrast. Its white face with Black Gold numerals and orange hand and on band pusher, with rubber tyre tread strap will be increasing in value in years to come. Absolutely love it. Went out and purchased one. Nothing but looks and admiration by onlookers. Great model TAG

  • Niall

    Dire! Tag Heuer should limit this to one piece.

  • Certainly a mixed view on this one- people either seem to love it or hate it. Instagram was positive, Facebook 50: 50 and seems like here there aren't many fans!

    I do think you have to put this in context: the country-specific LE models only ever change one or two details (maybe a colour or two)- you can't really compare them to a worldwide release that can have bigger changes.

    Actually, I think this one looks great- easily the nicest colour combination of this range…and I do prefer it to the previous Goodwood Carreras by a long way. Those were far too busy for me.



  • I personally like it.
    Reminds me of my Monaco Grand Prix – and is a sure change from almost all limited editions being black / grey with a touch of red.

    This panda look with orange highlights is quite a change.

  • Rob

    I love it, it’s the best color combination of all the models In my opinion.

    Can you advise availability to Asia?

    • calibre11

      Sorry Rob- I understand that it’s UK only.

      • calibre11

        Update: That was the plan initially, but these are now available globally


    • Steve

      I’ve seen the timepiece at the Boutique in San Jose, CA! I would check with them.

  • WineCape

    I love the White (Opaline) and black gold double numerals on the dial. Easily the best contrast of the 43mm Ceramic Carrera models.
    However, the rubber strap is … iffy-looking though despite the consistent design concept TAG Heuer wanted to create.
    Would rubber on this Carrera last as long as leather? I wonder if it’s possible to ask the dealers at ordering to replace it with leather; with the selfsame orange stitching from previous McLaren iterations? If so, consider it an acquired item!

    • calibre11

      Should last as long- perhaps longer depending on your climate.

      Not sure what other strap options they have, but would have thought anything else would cost more than the rubber