Given all the celebrations and new products launched in 2010 for TAG Heuer’s 150th anniversary, you could be forgiven for thinking that 2011 will be a relatively quiet year. The good news for the fans is that in the next month or so, we’ll see the first of the 2011 watches, the highlight being the new Carrera Mikrograph. While the details of the watch are still under wraps, Calibre 11 can show you today a sneak preview of the new watch and give a few hints on this exciting new model.
The Mikrograph is the new movement developed by TAG Heuer that is accurate to 1/100th second and is effectively a replacement for the Calibre 360 movement. What is exciting about this watch is that it’s a blend of the new and the old- a revolutionary movement teamed with a classic Carrera design that wears the Heuer logo. And of course, it’s right that the Carrera Mikrograph will carry this logo, because as fans will know, the Heuer Mikrograph is one of the brands most significant historical pieces.
The original Heuer Mikrograph was itself a revolution when it was released in 1916, being the first stop-watch with the ability to time 1/100th of a second- a real milestone that had huge implications for science as well as sporting events. It was with the Mikrograph (below) that Heuer became the official timer of the 1920 Olympic games .
The Carrera Mikrograph will not be the first time that the Mikrograph name has been resurrected, with the first versions of the current Microtimer being called the Micrograph when it was released as a limited edition.
The details of the new chronograph movement are still secret, other than the fact that it is a highly complex movement (close to 400 individual components) that was designed and developed entirely in-house, with the same specialist team responsible for the Calibre V (Monaco V4) movement. As I mentioned in this post, TAG Heuer now have an area set aside in its T-1 facility to focus on manufacturing high-end movements and watches, such as the Mikrograph and the Monaco V4.
The key achievement of the Mikrograph is the 1/100th accuracy, something already achieved with the Calibre 360. So why is this different? Well, you’ll have to wait and see, but I can say that the Mikrograph movement represents a significant step forward.
For the moment the only photo I can share of the new watch is this teaser below. While it may only be a partial photo, you can see enough to already have several clues about the classic nature of the design- the rose gold finish, the Heuer crown, the unusual interval markings on the dial and the brown inner-dial. The look combines the classic Carrera shape and design cues mixed with the key elements of the original Mikrograph.
There is no information on pricing yet, but as this will be a limited edition (probably around 150 only), I’d expect pricing at least in line with the Carrera 360- and maybe higher.
So for the moment that is all that can be said. It really is a cool new design (and a distinctive, classic look for such an avant garde design) and it will be great to see the reaction to the new movement, which is anything but retro. Roll on 2011.