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TAG Heuer Carrera Calibre 1887 Time Machine Nendo Japan Limited Edition Watch

TAG Heuer Carrera Calibre 1887 Time Machine Nendo Japan Limited Edition Watch Watch Releases

Have you ever wondered what a modern, iconic chronograph watch would look like if it were fitted with hands designed ages ago? No? Yes? Well, the TAG Heuer Carrera Calibre 1887 Time Machine Nendo Japan Limited Edition offers an answer to that fascinating question.

If you are like me, you have heard about TAG Heuer but until now did not know about Nendo. Worry not, as we shall discover right now that over the last 18 years this Tokyo, Japan-based design company has worked on everything from designing shoe stores through creating graphics and advertisements, all the way to a wide range of products – which happen to include watches. As such, in one of its latest ventures, Nendo has collaborated with TAG Heuer to create a very cool TAG Heuer Carrera Calibre 1887 Time Machine Nendo Japan Limited Edition, with a set of highly unusual red hands – not linked to but strangely reminiscent of those unnecessarily large and yet strangely awesome swords flung around viciously by Japanese anime cartoon characters.

TAG Heuer Carrera Calibre 1887 Time Machine Nendo Japan Limited Edition Watch Watch Releases

TAG Heuer Carrera Calibre 1887 Time Machine Nendo Japan Limited Edition Watch Watch Releases

Nendo explains its concept as “Giving people a small ‘!’ moment (…) which make our days so interesting, so rich. Thatʼs why we want to reconstitute the everyday by collecting and reshaping them into something thatʼs easy to understand. Weʼd like the people whoʼve encountered Nendoʼs designs to feel these small ‘!’ moments intuitively.”

Well, for fans of the TAG Heuer Carrera, these bold, large, red hands are more than a “small ‘!’ moment,” as the dial and hence the overall appearance of this classic Carrera is changed considerably. Frankly, at first sight, I was expecting to learn about a rare tribute limited-edition watch to some Japanese manga comics or anime shows, but it turns out the concept behind the TAG Heuer Carrera Calibre 1887 Time Machine Nendo Japan Limited Edition is very different. Nendo wanted to re-interpret the design of the Carrera through an image of “having gone to a local traditional watchmaker to get a chronograph watch repaired, only to find that the elderly proprietor has put on a pair of clock hands from a vintage watch by mistake.”

TAG Heuer Carrera Calibre 1887 Time Machine Nendo Japan Limited Edition Watch Watch Releases

TAG Heuer Carrera Calibre 1887 Time Machine Nendo Japan Limited Edition Watch Watch Releases

Nicknamed the Time Machine, this edition of the Carrera is a bit like the Legacy Machines of MB&F (hands-on here), where there is a unique blend of modern and traditional design elements – clearly, the execution of MB&F’s dedicated Legacy Machine collection is much more thorough, but Nendo’s approach is surely also a lot of fun and a fascinating and unexpected take on a modern icon.

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Nendo takes this vintage theme further by making the watch box look like an old book, with space inside for a smaller TAG Heuer box for the watch, as well as a red bookmark and paper knife, both designed to closely replicate the design of the hands of the watch. While the book-watch-box idea is something we have seen elsewhere before a number of times, having additional items that mimic particular design elements of the watch is a neat idea and one that would be nice to encounter more often.

TAG Heuer Carrera Calibre 1887 Time Machine Nendo Japan Limited Edition Watch Watch Releases

Last but not least, the watch also comes with a glass clock stand, individually handcrafted from an antique jar. With the old book, the red tools and this jar to cover the watch, you really can replicate the atmosphere of old workshops and laboratories – and yet, all this is linked to one of the more wearable and versatile modern chronograph wrist watches of the 21st century.

TAG Heuer Carrera Calibre 1887 Time Machine Nendo Japan Limited Edition Watch Watch Releases

Every other element other than the hour and minute hands of the TAG Heuer Carrera Calibre 1887 Time Machine Nendo Japan Limited Edition remain unchanged, so the 43mm-wide steel case, black ceramic bezel, black dial, and also the steel bracelet are all standard ones from TAG Heuer. This means that you really do get a very extraordinary blend of unmistakeable TAG Heuer Carrera DNA as well as a unique twist thanks to a pair of hands that do seem to be an afterthought or a one-of-a-kind modification…

TAG Heuer Carrera Calibre 1887 Time Machine Nendo Japan Limited Edition Watch Watch Releases

…however, the Time Machine is none of those, as the TAG Heuer Carrera Calibre 1887 Time Machine Nendo Japan Limited Edition is sold by TAG Heuer themselves exclusively in Japan, in a limited run of only 250 pieces at a price of 550,000 JPY. That is around $4,600, which is a negligible premium over the 525,000 JPY local price of the same model with the usual baton hands. If you like the looks and are given the chance to pick one up in Japan, you may not want to think too long, as this may just become one of the cool and rare collectables down the road – and you didn’t even have to spend that much more to get one. tagheuer.com

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Comments

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  • TrevorXM

    I like it. Very appropriate for a TAG Heuer with a Seiko-based movement to get a touch of Japanese humour.

  • Richard Baptist

    I like it! Now who do I know in Japan?

  • Chaz

    Impressive…made a fugly watch fuglier. Seems appropriate though as the movement in that watch was bought from Japan, anyway.

    • iamcalledryan

      That is one hell of an exaggeration; they bought the rights. The components that they buy from Seiko today fall far below the threshold to take “Swiss Made” off the dial. “100% in-house” is a different argument…

      To quote another blog:

      “TAG Heuer, while touting the 1887 as 100% in-house, has also announced publicly that it has a formal relationship with Seiko and is sourcing some less critical components for the 1887 from the Japanese brand due to Swatch Group restricting supply. All told, there are 22 suppliers of components for the 1887 and Seiko is the only one that is not Swiss”

  • IanE

    Bizarre – surely just one should be made – and put in a museum of the Surreal!

    p.s. (Oh, perhaps make two, one for JCB!)

    • Yeah, as a one-off it’s sort of interesting – so it’s too bad they did a series of them. The “moment” and exclamation mark stuff makes no sense to me.

  • TechUser2011

    Really beautiful watch.

  • Marius

    So you get a book, a knife, and a jar. The only thing missing from this ensemble is a kilo of Swiss cheese provided by the cheese maestro Jean Claude Biver.

  • Ulysses31

    They succeeded… it looks like a watch with the wrong hands put on by mistake. I don’t know if the fleeting novelty is worth that much.

  • Hideous, lol!

  • Raymond Wilkie

    To start with, no, I have never wondered what a modern, iconic chronograph watch would look like if it were fitted with hands designed ages ago, and or a vey good reason………….it would look stupid, and thanks to this latest offering from Tag, I have been proved right. Why limit a watch that has nothing special about it at all ?. As per all chronographs the face with its completely out of place hands is just cluttered. Their is no road long enough for this to become a classic…………….good point ?. The bracelets ok I suppose.

  • Julius Swerving

    Those hands just don’t fit. At all.

  • JimBob

    I like the bookmark and the display jar.

  • DanW94

    I understand what they were going for here but it’s still an odd pairing that doesn’t quite work aesthetically. Individually the watch is okay and the hands are too, if they were coupled with a different style watch. Although I’m not exactly sure what that style would be….

  • iamcalledryan

    First thoughts are quite negative, but reading through the idea and seeing all the little treats that it comes with, makes me appreciate the sentiment more. Still – would have been far better with some Breguet hands or samurai swords. Not sure how strong the link is between those hands and something Japanese, because all I think of when I see it is Louis XV!

    • DanW94

      Spot on about the Louis XV. It looks a little like a Fleur-de-lis pattern to me. Samurai sword hands would be a cool idea…

  • George Yang

    Interesting collaboration effort and I appreciate the extra goodies.

    However, was any copy editing done on this review? The number of unnecessary commas was ridiculous. It felt like Christopher Walken did the review.

  • Bert Kanne

    If it had sword hands and the 05, 10, 15, etc. was reduced in size, it would be a nice looking chronograph. I can see why they are only selling it in Japan…

  • SuperStrapper

    I like the handset, just not on this watch. More should have been done to make the watch different rathe than just putting the handset on it, because it does just look like a mistake, but not in a good way.

  • Ryan B.

    Make those hands work with a diver and then you’ve got something.

  • BNABOD

    ok so you take a decent looking watch (albeit too big the Carrera) and then you put on some ridiculous looking swords and then bam you got a limited edition. These hands are as good as a fit as jeans on a ballerina but wait, wait for it, you get a book and a glass jar. Opaque jar would be better as to never see it under the light of day. Now that is an idea.

  • Omegaboy

    The hands just don’t go with this dial design. They look like French Rococo. Think I’ll take a break and get some cocoa.

  • Shinytoys

    Heuer, how can you make me love you when you do something like this? The hands scream after thought. In other news, Happy New Year Everyone!!! Keep it safe and healthy!

  • Beefalope

    Ugh.

  • egznyc

    I appreciate the fact that this is rather weird and unorthodox, to put it mildly. I’m not even sure I’d ever want this watch on my wrist – let alone occasionally – but you know what? I’m actually enjoying it. Maybe it’s the New Year’s champagne talking but this seems silly, even playful, and as though it came from out of a weird horological dream. It’s the ghost of Watches Past meets the ghost of Watches Present.

    • Sevenmack

      I would put this watch on my wrists. Especially because of those red hands. They set the dial off nicely.

  • Woof. Seriously. A reissued Seiko movement and old-style Louis hands and you’re comparing it to MB&F? Not even close. There is nothing interesting about this watch, as opposed to MB&F, where some interesting watchmaking actually happens.

    Articles like this make ABTW look like a shill. Especially with the Biver interview posted today.

    • Ariel Adams

      No need for conspiracy theories. The volume of TAG Heuer-related content this week has been purely coincidental. This watch was never even shared with us by the brand and we had to discover it for ourselves. This is the type of obviously controversial limited edition watch that makes for great conversation down the road. It is an artistic rendition of a popular watch icon and for that we celebrate it. Who knows how its design will fare years from now. In any event we felt it deserved discussion. And if that is “shill” then so be it. The Biver interview article was done directly with Jean-Claude and had nothing to do with larger TAG Heuer brand in any way. Sometimes things just come together like this in terms of covering a single brand a lot in a short period of time, and frankly it is purely coincidental as mentioned above.

      • No conspiracies here, I promise. I’m just saying that while I can understand why a blog wouldn’t want to piss off a watch brand, kow towing when they release something this awful sends a poor message to readers.

        Either some of your articles need more thorough editing by someone that knows watches, or your contributors need more of an education.

        • Ariel Adams

          I should mention that I personally like the artistic value of the watch.

        • TechUser2011

          @wkfink:disqus : What is your major problem? It is likely that you have bad taste in watches that is not in alignment with normal people. You are entitled to your opinion, but don’t go around criticizing ABlogToWatch. If you don’t like what they write, feel free to start your own blog that no one will care about.

      • Lode_Runner

        I have to say, it’s disconcerting that you delete comments like the original one so readily. So the way it looks now, you deleted the original comment, but kept your self-serving response. You’d have been better off deleting the whole chain.

        I like this blog a lot, click on it several times a day, and do not think you guys are a bunch of corporate “shills.” But you don’t help your image when you delete comments from posters simply because you do not agree with them, and not because they’re offensive or otherwise inappropriate.

  • spiceballs

    Sorry, no – “hands-on-face” disease?.

  • wallydog2

    It must be difficult for the hundreds of watch companies out there to keep coming up, day after day, with new and “new” products. It’s almost as bad as the wall paper industry.
    In this case, maybe the hands will look better after a third glass of cheap chianti.

  • “Every other element other than the hour and minute hands of the TAG
    Heuer Carrera Calibre 1887 Time Machine Nendo Japan Limited Edition
    remain unchanged”

    Then why bother, really? Either make something completely unique, or don’t. This is like Tissot changing the color of a strap and calling it a “Basketball Fan Watch”.

  • Matt Smith-Johnson

    No sir… I don’t like it.

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