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Cartier Santos 100 Carbon & Ballon Bleu De Cartier Carbon Watches

Cartier Santos 100 Carbon & Ballon Bleu De Cartier Carbon Watches Watch Releases

Cartier is announcing the release of two classics refreshed in a black ADLC coating. Not the first pieces from the brand done in a carbon coating, the Cartier Santos 100 Carbon and the Cartier Ballon Blue De Cartier Carbon watches retain the brand’s storied heritage while offering buyers a blacked-out piece. Though not really new or original, the black cases add a younger and more contemporary flair to these classic watches. Fans of Cartier will appreciate the ruggedness that these models afford while keeping in line with their classy appeal, along with the ADLC protection and whatever perceived “edge” a black coating brings with it.

Cartier Santos 100 Carbon & Ballon Bleu De Cartier Carbon Watches Watch Releases

Cartier has been making ADLC watches for several years now, like the Santos 100 Carbon version in gold, but are releasing these more affordable non-gold pieces with their newer in-house movement. At the time of its release many fans were skeptical, but grew to love the ADLC (amorphous diamond-like carbon) and its durable attributes. Here was a Cartier you could maybe even wear to the gym without babying it or worrying about scratches. Cartier claims that the ADLC is superior to PVD coating, and the increased scratch-resistance and an amazingly hard surface are just a few of its benefits which also include increased shock-resistance. You might not equate these elements with your typical Cartier, but here you have them in full force along with two renowned styles.

Cartier Santos 100 Carbon & Ballon Bleu De Cartier Carbon Watches Watch Releases

The Cartier Santos 100 Carbon comes as a “large model” in an ADLC-coated steel case measuring 51.1mm x 41.3mm. The other new release, the Ballon Bleu De Cartier Carbon is also housed in an ADLC-coated steel case that is 42mm wide. Each model features lume-treated sword hands so while you don’t get the classic Cartier blue, you do get increased legibility. Water resistance is 3 bar, and both are topped off with sapphire crystals. As always, the crowns receive special treatment with the Cartier Ballon Bleu Carbon featuring the blue synthetic spinel cabochon and the Cartier Santos 100 Carbon with a blue faceted synthetic spinel.

Cartier Santos 100 Carbon & Ballon Bleu De Cartier Carbon Watches Watch Releases

Each watch is outfitted with the in-house calibre 1847 MC. The automatic 1847 MC features a 42-hour power reserve. The Cartier Santos 100 Carbon and the Ballon Bleu De Cartier Carbon represent a shift forward in design attitude while amassing even more fans with their newly added in-house movements. I am hard-pressed to find a Cartier watch that I don’t appreciate in at least some way, and each of these models maintain their distinctive attributes while offering something new and fresh in the Cartier line.

Each piece is offered on a seductive black calf-skin strap featuring steel and ADLC buckles. These bolder-looking pieces might draw in a younger demographic, especially when considering that they’re priced just a few hundred dollars more than their non-ADLC siblings. Pricing for the Cartier Santos 100 Carbon is $7,600 while the Ballon Bleu De Cartier Carbon will fetch $6,

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  • I read the title of this and thought I would hate it, but I have to say I’m a bit surprised. I think the ballon bleu looks wrong, the lines are too soft on that case for ADLC to look good, but the Santos on that black strap actually looks really cool. I think the visible screwheads and wide bezel lend itself to a more rugged look (I’ve never been a huge fan of the dressy or two-tone Santos watches because of those screws). It almost feels like a high-end well executed version of something like Victorinox. Still probably wouldn’t buy it, but I do like it.

    -Amateur Horologist

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  • johnwithanh

    I’m wearing the Santos once I become a professional assassin. The Ballon is trying too hard.

  • laup nomis

    Kudos to them for introducing a sporty type watch. However, at 41.3mm wide, because its a square case, the Santos is going to wear huge on the wrist. My dad has a 32mm santos, which I saw advertised recently on a certain 2nd hand site, as a woman’s watch! It certainly wasn’t when he bought it in the eighties.
    I wear all sizes of watch, but to me Cartier should mean under the cuff, discretion and confidence.

  • Chaz

    Kind of looks like the result of someone buying a new silver Porsche and then spray painting it matte black to make it look “stealthy”.

  • laup nomis

    Kudos for Cartier trying new ideas. However, being square and black, the 41.3mm Santos is going to wear huge on the wrist.
    Cartier works best as under-the-cuff discrete confidence. My dad has a 32mm mens Santos he bought in the eighties. I love it. However I did see it recently see the very same watch being described by a well known used watch site, as a woman’s watch. So 1) shows how much I know, and 2) stuff them.

  • iamcalledryan

    The Ballon Bleu is waaaaay to classical to execute with carbon. The Santos is pretty cool though.

  • DanW94

    I like the Santos 100 for its masculine look with the bezel screws and the stout dimensions, while at the same time maintaining a dressy appearance. It’s like the Dumont put in some extra time at the gym. The carbon gives it another layer of robustness but I’d just as well have it in steel. I especially liked the steel model with the yellow gold bezel reviewed a while back. The shift to the in-house movement from previously used ETA’s is a nice bonus.

    • Chaz

      Isn’t this just coated steel? Diamond “like carbon”?

      • DanW94

        You are correct, I misspoke. I should have clarified that I’d just as well have the non-coated steel version.

  • Bill W

    The printing on the guilloche of the Ballon Bleu looks really sloppy, as does the stitching on the straps, but I don’t mind the look of the Santos.

  • A_watches

    Wtf were they thinking

    • Chaz

      Keep the line fresh…make more money for Richemont shareholders

    • Raymond Wilkie

      Beats me

  • Raymond Wilkie

    Since the first moment i saw the steel Santos 100 it went straight to my number 1 list of wants ( i know its frightfully common, some may say a bit ” high street ” but i couldn’t care less ). This black funeral version does nothing for me at all. Never been a fan of material straps and this looks just awful ( the stitching looks rough ). As Bill W points out printing on a guillotine is a bit of a mess. This is the a bit silly priced for an automatic , but i want it. .

  • Ulysses31

    The same old shit – now in black! Seriously though, the modern, stealthy look doesn’t work on something with cabochons and Roman numerals, which are far too old fashioned by comparison. I don’t like the way the printed text and the oval around the date window look due to the guilloché making it appear feint and improperly applied.

    • Raymond Wilkie

      Why would they even try ? Someone needs slapped.

  • SuperStrapper

    Meh. Neither of these are watch lines at Cartier that I have much love for regardless of material. I think the red seconds hand cheapen the appearance on both watches.

    I actually don’t mind the CARTIER logo on the guilloche, but the ‘automatic’ looks ridiculous.

  • JimBob

    I really like this Ballon Bleu, except for the upside-down roman numerals. And the oval date hole.

  • HectorAsuipe

    Part of the Santos allure is the awesome bracelet, which this model is obviously missing. I do think the whole package looks good, though. But 3 bar? That won’t even protect it from the tears I shed when it comes time to service it.

    • HectorAsuipe

      Just checked the Cartier web site. Water resistance is 10 bar (100 meters, 300 feet). Now I feel better.
      Having tried on the 100 XL on a strap, I can say that it is definitely a big watch. Now that it is in black, perhaps it will wear smaller (black is thinning, you know). Wish they would make it in a 90% size, rather than the 80% sized “mid” version.

  • ??????

    Balon Bleu looks simply ridiculous: its like take Faberge Egg and carbon coat it for “stealthy” look… At the same time, Santos looks rather bad-ass – reminds me of Ralph Lauren watches.

    • JimBob

      Needz moar wood.

  • commentator bob

    The Santos is the first pilot’s watch and arguably the first purpose built watch, and does not get enough credit for that. It would look better with a blue seconds hand.

    I am surprised they did not pick the Drive as the other DLC watch.

  • Boogur T. Wang

    I like the Santos 100; even in this blacked-out version.
    A true Classic Design, IMO.
    Not so crazy about the Balloon Bleu model.


    Dark Side of The Moon, it is not.


    Looks good the Santos that is. Maybe work on the PR in the price range but the black dlc like gives it a more sporty appearance.

  • Ryan B.

    Square model, yes

    Round model, no

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