Here is TAG Heuer’s new Concept watch for Basel 2012- the TAG Heuer Carrera Mikrogirder 10000 featuring a unique Chronograph movement that vibrates at 7.2 million beats per hour allowing time to be read to a precision of 5/ 10,000th of a second. Suffering from Deja vu yet? Didn’t TAG Heuer already shown us the same watch with different colours back in January?
The answer is yes and no. The new Mikrogirder 10000 doesn’t measure time any more precisely than its predecessor, but it does offer several meaningful improvements over the original.
Mikrogirder 2000 vs. Mikrogirder 10000
The first change is the way that the precision of the watch is represented. The original watch has “2000” at the 12 o’clock position and “1/ 2000th Second Precision” on the dial.
Mikrogirder II is now referred to as having “5/ 10,000th” precision- so, “10000” at the 12 o’clock position and “5/ 10000th Second Precision” on the dial. Of course, this means the same thing, but there are clear marketing advantages in using “10,000”.
The second obvious change is to the case. Mikrogirder 2000 has a polished, traditional steel case- at least the bottom-half as you see below:
Mikrogirder II uses the same “hollowed-out” design of the Mikrotimer lugs (below) and applies this look to the side of the case as well as the lugs.
The finish of the case has also changed, with the new model looking more “industrial”- the polished finish has gone, replaced by a “raw” finish.
Topping off the design changes is a new treated leather strap, similar to the one used on the TAG Heuer Monaco V4 Titanium, which replaces the rubber strap of the original.
The real difference between the Mikrogirder 2000 and Mikrogirder 10000 is what you see on the dial.
For starters, the outer-ring is now light grey/ silver, in contrast to the Anthracite dial. This makes it easier to read the outer-scale and is the same design trick used on the Mikrograph of highlighting the Chronograph scale.
The new scale uses the central flying blue hand and indicates the 1/ 1000th and 5/ 10,000th fractions. The outer-scale is split into five zones (indicated by the small triangles). The 12 o’clock register displays elapsed seconds- just like the original.
Compare this to the original below and the improvements are marked.
Last but not least, the window on the dial has changed shape to show more of the three girders- the original hid most of the third girder.
TAG Heuer Design Drawings
TAG Heuer have also released some sketches showing the detail of the Mikrogirder. I always love seeing these drawings as it gives an appreciation for the thinking behind the final design.
The drawing below shows clearly the design concept of the asymmetric case- the combination of a round stopwatch and a Carrera case.
No news yet on whether we are any closer to a production version of the Mikrogirder 10000, but it’s clear that TAG Heuer are investing significant time to refine and improve the fundamentals of the movement. The Mirkogirder 10000 may be a gentle evolution of the original Geneva concept watch, but it does represent a meaningful improvement.
Thanks to Abel Court, a few photos of the TAG Heuer Mikrogirder 10000 live from Basel 2012